Sad Girl on a Bicycle

Rebecca van Laer
| poetry


No one goes downtown.
I see an empty square and name it after you.

In the yard of the house you used to live in,
the flowers shed petals, the grass overgrows.

These corners still seem yours. At night,
you used to ride ahead,

turning back to capture me
with a disposable camera.

In this photograph, everything is black
but my headlight and the glow above,

my white fingers
gripping the handlebars.

Rebecca van Laer‘s poetry and criticism has appeared in DMQ, the Iowa Review, the Cimarron Review, and elsewhere. She has taught creative writing at Boston University and at Brown University’s high school program.