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Be Still in the Water

Shade. Shadowflicker on skin.

Fingers first. Then the palm, the wrist a knob, spin like a top.

In my dream, the room is dark. I stand in the corner, facing the walls.

I look down at my hands and watch them disappear.

To feel the world is to pass through first. My mind is a wave, calculating its demise, the hit on the shore, working its way backwards.

I live in two realities, one where I have written this sentence and the one after that and the one after that, the world spinning, spinning, a syntax of eternity.

And the other more mundane existence where I am still writing this word.

The body: stretched out, engaged in a contact imbalance of time, flitting between what it is and what you think it is.

Only a message carried through space, sung by the stones of the earth.

Hold your breath, hover over its deep pockets, wait for it to break.

We are in a forest now, waiting for the sound of our voices, which call to us from someplace else.

I linger over a fractured tree and place flowers in my mouth, one by one.

To think, only to realise I cannot hear my thoughts.

The body as a pipe, through which we pass, holding nothing. I have never been so terrified.

In the disappearing world, the present self- a landscape of stillness.

These moments, I cease to exist as one whole, or as a whole at all.

I become something abstract, only a shape that occurs again and again, no matter how many times it is cut.

The body: a vessel held tight, unbroken, carried through time. Look closely: see my fingerprints, wrapped around the sides, nails dug in for the staying.

There. There. Gone.

In my dream, there is a drain fixed to the shower wall and a clump of hair stuck to it, spinning into itself. Every turn pulses it into something more. A heave of knitting.

A proposition:

The body as an explanation, something to be placed inside a name and left. Bottomless number from simple rules repeated without end, the sum of which will equal one.

See: Heartbeat, eyeblink, skinitch, songbreath, gutroll, brainspark, heartbreak, eyetwitch- how can I explain?

So much lost in the gap between the tongue and the lip.

At my funeral, the priest offers me a stranger’s body. Take it, he says, with a kindness in his eyes. I wake in a sweat.

Hold out your hands, check for signs of damage before circling back.

The body as a room, something to be stayed in.

Be still in the water. Be still.

Photo by Mario Dobelmann on Unsplash

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