I too, have seen our sister make a rainbow with her mouth,
glass of tap water, noon sun. The halo of vapor around
her face was magic; the way a carpet burn leaves the same pink
scar as a house-fire flame.
Sing with me from your charnel mouth the paramedic’s song:
the excavation of the buried pulse, the way he presses his stethoscope
to your throat, the way he mistakes the Doppler’s echo
for a place to lay his head.
I too, have been called a magician. Watch how I wrap your birthday balloons in scotch tape, pull a needle from my boutonniere and pierce through. Watch how nothing happens, nothing pops. See how your breath is still in the balloons.
I can count on one hand the barn swallows hung upside down from butcher’s string in the market. How they thrashed beautifully against the onrush of blood. How you mimicked the moth’s pale wing breaking the spider webs shape, shouting so small against the struggle.
Repeat after me: the ocean floor was born to ascend, and meet you half-way. Tell me we can call the edge of sleep our shoreline, write our names in its sand, watch bird’s mistake your eyes for lakes, watch them crash and keep still. It seems now, the only way to hear your voice is to tie the stems of oak leaves in knots, float them from the pier, and listen to them sink.