when I know I’m going to be
out late I turn on shows about birds
for the cat before I leave the house

once at a bar packed with strangers
I watched the Knicks lose a game
no one expected they would win
and I cried so hard I embarrassed
the bartender

when my dad started losing
control of his bladder
I didn’t know
where to look

after I left home my mom
just wanted a creature to care
for that wasn’t dying
so she filled the pond with expensive koi
who swam to her voice and ate
from her hand until a hawk
came hungry and ate the water
empty and all my mom did
was get more koi

and we never learn

and we are no more than bones

afloat in an unquiet broth
of blood and water

but I love you

I love you

even though I know
you’re going to die

First Prayer

Into my home, invited Anahita, divinity of waters / of giving me my daughters