I’m walking down
a cold tunnel. The walls curve
up to a ceiling of water.
passes over, making the hairs stand
on the back of my neck.
Ahead of me, a boy appears
turned away from me,
dripping wet not even shivering.
I tilt my head
and so does he. My heart begins beating
quicker because nobody should be here
alone, even if they don’t seem
cold. I move forward to see
if he’s okay but he walks further away,
his steps in tandem with mine, leaving
wet footprints along the way. I step in them
trying to shout for him to stop,
but only silence slips from my mouth.
An uneasiness pools in me—
at any moment the boy will turn around,
scream at me because I can never
leave him alone.
David Ly is the author of the poetry collection Mythical Man (Anstruther Books, 2020) and the chapbook Stubble Burn (Anstruther Press, 2018). His poetry has appeared in PRISM international, Arc Poetry Magazine, The /temz/ Review, carte blanche, and elsewhere. He is Poetry Editor of This Magazine and sits on the editorial collective of Anstruther Press.