Like the Sea I Gather All the Shores

I do not know how to give birth
to the intricate river I carry
inside me. The fat blue baby

fussy with desire, daring me
to lose it with each merciless
kick that can only mean nurse me

love me on my own terms. The rain
colludes with the tin roof
to wake me & I begin the day

by watching an orchestra of stones
marching toward blossoming
In the wake of their pageant,

a sudden pleasure unseamed
by doubt like sheer gauze.
I bleed a rusty light onto

the gauze-like page, on which
I write to friends about my
failure to remain unscathed. Like

the sea, I shatter easily when
touched by beauty—inlets
& reefs, scenes of unearned grace.

I gather all the shores to feel
the rift closing between what
I wanted to be & who I’ve become.

The living are always easier
to lie to. All the stories I bury
like dresses passed down from the dead.


We spooned
out avocados beside lakes, // I licked pink salt from your nape, /
drew the shapes of continents
on your back

Last Boat Home

Why not jump in / and swim back to that place? We came from // the water.