Kill Devil Hills
—Outer Banks, North Carolina Coast
They’re all of them wasted:
two in the outdoor shower,
two toeing ambergris at the inlet.
Worth millions, they say.
Folks care so much about money.
The sex I can understand.
I peered through a hole in the wood wall
and saw them. Vivid as a fantasy.
I was that boy once, couldn’t believe my luck.
I was that girl once, terrified he’d go too far,
unable to stop. No matter who I was,
I didn’t know my power.
Against Me, With Me, Round About
Inside the fowl, I feel for organs:
the hard gizzard, the soft heart.
My fingers seek the surface—
the hands know nothing here.
Is it fair to brim over when given
a vessel? Inside—the soul; inside—
the lungs; inside—the brain.
How could they fit in a jar
on the mantle, even one
fashioned by a craftsman?
Not a nest, a sycamore,
riparian, replanted nowhere
near a river. To prosper,
to bear fruit and family,
or molder at the trunk.
I must go to water.
The red words, blue seas, in holy books.
Doubt like thunderstorms, like talons
in my shoulder. Keeping myself at great
remove, I found the monastic scribe’s peace.
Through the window this morning:
a red-tailed hawk in the white tree
perched with me as the sun rose.
I had already taken up my instrument.