her archipelagos. mom 1946–2009.

her heart was a furnace

fluttering and flashing

waving its wings, as I turned the leaves in the yard

cursing, the heaviness of her veins

weighed on me divinely.

the clouds (charred) rumbled above me

inaugurating a new sun.

my mouth frosted dry, its lips sinewy with arrows.

below the rake I see

more leaves, wandering aloud

at the edge of the tines.

the tides of her heart rose and fell

i stepped back, asking

can cracks like that be permanent?

the glinting link, maybe of chain, more likely of silk,

exposed her vicious mortal innocence

enduring in its cruelty,

its tattered eyes cloudy but certain in color

jealous emerald running like a river

of moon-bright water

through her sea, through me, gently at first

unambiguous and thoughtless

the lyric of its motion (generous)

considerate as it enveloped

her mottled left hand, holder

of who I was.

my ungraceful oblivion sealed in the

envelope, its soundless chorus

asked her to let me be

someone I never was.

too often, we hold tightly onto the hands of those we try to destroy.

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