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Response to Okkervil River’s “A Stone”

by Chris Bollini

You love a stone
Because it’s smooth
And it’s cold
And you love most
To be told
That it’s all your own.

Yes, I’m a stone.

I am the clumsiest shape
To burden woman.
I am the vaguest depression
To plague her, to settle in.
I am too stoic for her
Whims to find resolution
In my granite limbs.

I am the hollowest tone
To pluck her soul.
I am the quickest “yes”
To manifest in chaos.
I am the staunchest bedrock
To refuse shaping;
I am rock casing.

I resist possession—
The weakest man gives
The most teasing love.
If she bleeds the love
From me that I demand
Of her, I wrench nothing.
I am buffed marble,

Making imperfect reflections
Of her twilight-tinged worry
In my midnight-blue eyes.
Yes, I’m a stone.
But I’ve coughed and spat,
Endured white veins
And hard gray—

I am her heaviest weight.