When I asked Olena, in Kyiv,
she said she was a barman.
I slipped her a smile like I’d slip
a waitress a tip at the end of the night.
Where I live, we say bartender.
looking at the blue-black bruise on my arm.
I repeated, looking not into her hazel eyes,
but at the violet circles underneath.
When she swept her long hair, henna,
up and off her neck, I thought of my daughter,
and when she twisted it into a tight rope,
I thought of my heart, and again, I thought,