We have been breached or magnet pulled
the force of it depleted
earth no more than shadow cold a vinegar
spare room emptied of the little heart gone still
sometime overnight in ice in air fugitive
released and we are left
to hold a splinter of the love thwarted love
inconsequential now with no direction.
Pumping of fluorescence and in the streets below
buses shudder stopped.
Nurse has left without another word
image left onscreen as spare as winter dawn
the lake has settled back unswollen now
space I’d turned attention to as if it held a symphony
of God’s own composition
gone and I’m a leaking drain exposed a harridan
a sea without its secret life.
What’s his name and who is he?
Wonders he’d have borne along in time the skin
barely body yet a piece of him gone sour in me
another piece retrieved made whole
suckled in the stratosphere
you never changed.
Your brother staked the Christmas claim and took you in
he spiraled in your waters made his whisper plain
so soon after miraculous
emerged alone and perfect as a simple stone in sea
midday Indian summer shadowless
bearing moon and music granting of the only prayer
that mattered any more.
This plane a mirror of another.
Out here we worry find the heartbeat gift.
Let the first soul fill the next with promise:
he is writing songs
heard in hum of waters where you lived
made a mother of me and forgave your silver trail
your brother followed safe and free.
Nancy Bevilaqua's poems have appeared in or are forthcoming from West Branch, Whiskey Island, Tupelo Quarterly, Tinderbox Poetry, Hubbub, and other journals. She's the author of a poetry collection entitled Gospel of the Throwaway Daughter. In the 1980's she attended Reed College and NYU's M.A. program in English/Creative Writing (Poetry).
Shell Myers was born in Elyria, Ohio, but now calls Philadelphia their home. They are a queer multimedia artist, voted most artistic in the 8th grade. They are passionate about emotional sensitivity, play, and subverting toxic masculinity. Shell is the Administrative Coordinator of Art & Art History at Drexel University. When they're not putting in that 9 to 5, they make time to create collages, paintings, photographs and drawings. You can find more of their work at www.shellmyers.com