lulled, like the only pair of eyes
you told me about.
it is customary here, to nap
in the afternoon with the carcasses
of stars. also customary: to keep
stolen smiles from daughters.
polished, vigorously, by pitying fire
-hands. all you had left to touch was
the soft seed of mercury. so, you let
it char your enamel, and call it mother
-hood. a refrain. the sable heart of carbon,
lost to blinding light. they never asked you.
exasperated—rolled gently in gossamer false
-hood. your dimpled elbows, spinning loss
like fireflies in a tailorbird’s nest. blink. blink. blink.
And we have made from water every living thing.
your dry pulsating eyes, spelling me orphaned.
wiping the moon with a rag,
I remember our language.