What I Have Left
How do I explain what the water here
tastes like, or how loud the ocean can
mourn when you need it to?
Your name embossed on stones, street
signs, the faces of dropped pennies. I need
to know what keeps you up at night.
Though we can’t feel it, we are sustained by
the hurried molecular bumping of our bodies—
every piece propelled, replaced, regrown.
Physicists love to remind us that we never
actually touch anything. Electron repulsion
is too strong. We are separated by this
unfathomably small distance. Kiss is an illusion.
In a universe that is ever-expanding, your
spectrum breathes red, reads alarm. I worry
that you will forget my fragility, how little I
am made of.
This is the equation of the body—to be set
in motion. We work our own magic, break
it all down to science.
We are born for this. To carry what we love
across the distance, knowing full well that we
cannot contain it.
What lingers after us is small, unyielding.
A question in the eye, delicate thought at
the edge of our wanting. What we ask for,
in the dark, we become.