If I were younger,
then there would be a younger man
coming to find you
across the skinned savanna
and when he found you
he would stake his spear
in the ground outside your hut
and importune you with great magics
and togetherly you would
build tiny canopies of imago
across plains of dust and straw;
if I were only a younger man—
but before me now, yellowing,
is the fresh core of an apple
I don’t remember eating.

Richard King Perkins II is a state-sponsored advocate for residents in long-term care facilities. He lives in Crystal Lake, IL, with his wife, Vickie and daughter, Sage. He is a three-time Pushcart nominee and a Best of the Net nominee whose work has appeared in more than a thousand publications.