Imagine what you can’t ever know

Wasn’t there joy, wasn’t there appetite
and expectation? Weren’t the jets of steam

from the laundry a welcome veil on the skin?
Wasn’t the stucco on the wall a way to keep

the sugar trails alive longer? Didn’t the ants
crowd every baseboard and the geckos plummet

like dark green weights at dusk? Wasn’t the blown
glass lamp an ochre pool that wings papered,

night after sultry night? And wasn’t there a bed
with sheets of cotton, surrounded by nets of gauze?

Didn’t the water flower crimson in the basin
and the child open its mouth to the moon?

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