Traveler’s Song

Find me between
and underneath the syntax

of words I say in my head,
in consonants that move

like first-time skaters
on unfamiliar ice but grit

their teeth and never
fall down— Find me

in the starch that stiffens
the clothes and the bleach

that blues the whites
we wear closest to our skin

then peel off before going
to bed at night. Find me

in a nest of mosquito
netting, in the dark

where my body is perfect
as it is and my tongue

clicks to the tune of geckos
fastened to the ceiling.

The world is a ship I climbed
into, once long ago. It called

me both child and orphan;
it pinned to my breast a star-

gazer lily adorned with gold
dust and hawk bells.








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