~ after “El Flautista” (“The Flutist”), Remedios Varo; 1955
A cardinal touches down on a Japanese maple
but can’t tell us where they’ve taken
all the children. We take turns watching,
we take turns playing songs for the mothers:
their grief, our grief, might merge
to form a thing that could unseal a stone
from the mountain. Only there is no one
walking out into the light as if resurrected.
That copper-tinged wind, that citadel
whose once beautiful blueprint is breaking.
The light, too, is breaking; or in the throes
of change. My face is the inside of a shell up-
turned to the moon. A rune, a coelacanth.
Night-blooming cereus stranded in time.