Photograph by Ladan Osman
My thought was to sit and perhaps
in sitting, one might learn how to reach
across a bench where emptiness sits and
touch a woman’s skin.
In this touch, my hand is a voice, it lifts itself
like wind and touches the woman’s face.
The woman, my mother, turns. Her tongue is a hawk.
She cups my face in her hands, says, “I saw your
father last night. He came back as rain.”
Here, a family array themselves around a sandwich
like luminous apparels. A boy tickles his father, punctures
a hole from which Spanish laughter spills forth. The choral
trees purr. A leaf, progeny of air, falls, sails into wind, into light. It
leans, hesitates at the cliff edge of air, then surrenders to the fall,
to earth, loam—the soft mulch of dark from where it
will come back to us as rain or as the eyes of a child.