Every morning the woman bathes 
in the river encircling the garden. 
She tries to remember the spot where

she'd fallen from heaven, where she’d
folded her wings and carefully hidden them
from the damp and heat of this uncertain

place. She supposes that what they call
body in this world is a way to give 
the untethered a home, a sheath 

like that worn by jellyfish pulsing
across the channel, their insides
a generous peep show for which

you don’t have to pay the price
of a ticket. Come one, come all.
What you see is what you get.

Woman with mermaid tail, woman
with bearded arms and graceful legs.
The fruitful have daughters swinging

in bowers under the trees, hair
honeyed sunrise, cheeks red with
promise. In the fields, farmer’s

daughters weave a garland of snails
between the horns of a water buffalo.
Daily they plead with the gods to look

the other way, to take no more
interest in them than a tadpole
writing its small hieroglyphic

in shallow water. This is how it is
when your life feels sometimes of no
larger consequence than a window.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.