No one can contain the waves; they are not like beans in a bronze pot,
they are not like threads woven to make them stronger together. Where
you have gone I could not follow; where you have gone I could not
reach you with a child's first smile, with the village idiot's last
breath, with an orange-pink sunset though I pace the shore, wet
lapping my hem, spotting your ship that is never your ship at our
The sea roils in the near distance; it booms torment, calming only at
light's return to mercy. I long to gather you to me, but there is
nothing here beyond the rush of wind, nothing beyond the tedious ache
of hours to hold close.
The fishermen are persistent; they haul in their teeming catch of
silvery fish, they catcall and jostle my elbow. I slip through, as
long as I have to. I set up a stool. My fingers set to reversing the
brocade. With each strand, I unknot the current that says there is a
world of temptation you will not resist, being after all a robust,
mortal man. With each strand, I push back wars and women and winds
that took you from us.
Picking apart my tight braiding, I daydream of reaching to rest my
palm on your scratchy, bearded cheek. "You're home." I practice, but
no sound matches the ardor, the tenderness inside this gold box lodged
between the birdcage of my ribs.
Are you well, my darling? Are you awake, alone with your confusions, too?
With practice, I have gotten as skilled in undoing as you once
complimented my making. See what quick work I make of unraveling.
Bright hues, these silky strands again dangle; the weave cannot hold
until your return.
comet debris fallen
in a wish