I. Baby Teeth
Who you were isn’t a loss
it’s a noise in the dark
from the boxes of photos under your bed.
You were always a cagey one,
tying grievances into a hangman’s knot
and stepping off the platform
with a little smile and vacancy
written on the palm of your hand.
A catchphrase that meant you were safe
as long as you were
So last night a crow came to your door
and left you a ring of baby teeth
that smelled like oranges and lye
and you cut your hair
tying unkempt strands in a bow
singing the song you made up
when he told you life was hell.
this will be different.
Oh girl, that one thing was the only thing
that wasn’t a lie.
II. Sky and Water
You are made of glass and volcanic ash.
I am weightless as the snow
caught in a child’s eyelashes.
You are old and your bones
tell you stories about the man
you wanted to be
until the lies are better suited
to your purloined ego
than the truth.
I am beyond your reach
though you tell yourself I dangle
on your string.
I am light years away
speaking in tongues,
learning from Buddhist monks.
I am not made from you.
I travel long because the stars
are my home.
I am an astronaut.
I can’t breathe your shallow waters.
I am a mermaid.