i am an apparition in your dreamless mind. clouds
drip, saturated with memory and you pull your hood
up, blink your eyes that are the color of television
glow at 3am, when you lie awake in bed with thoughts
that loop like a bad techno beat. i am the many-
faceted diamond of your insomnia and i cut away
at the basalt of your heart to find lava on the inside.
sleep finally comes like a power grid black-out. i blow
you a kiss. you will wake with a bruise on your face
in the morning.
the sea was not a dumb stone
its soft moan called to me here
on the shore with heavy heart
the water will part, oh seer
under the stars, glimmering
light shimmering in the night
nothing more than the stark sea
adrift and free, soul apart.
it could have been worse, you say. you could have
been sucking on the remote trying to taste milk
while the channels flicker somewhere between a
horror matinee and a sitcom. building sculptures
of what your life was supposed to look like out
of wooden blocks and bendable wire, you turn
the dial in the middle of your mother’s face and
fall asleep listening to her sing softly in static.
drowning was something we could own.
we were children staring through the grates
from the top of the lighthouse, reaching out
to touch a horizon so flat we could draw a line
against it but our pencils would never reach
far enough. we breathed in the tang of ocean
air but wanted salt in our lungs instead, for our
boots to become so water-logged that they
would just slip off our feet and we could kick
away into safety. as we grew older we realized
just how hard it was to hold our heads under
the water long enough. how bodies betray. how
we were left with nothing but sand in our mouths.