I Spy


Caught a glimpse
of you rounding the corner,
Felt the wind
from the hem of your dress,
Heard you in the laugh
of a well-lived woman,
Saw your rhythm
in the gait of a man.

I woke up tasting a word
in a language I don’t recognize.
Who or what are you?





Oh, my long-lost cousin!

I had lunch with a long-lost cousin;
we both ordered salmon
and steaks for our mums:
two sisters sat across two near-sisters,
each unspooling a thread
from common memory.

She told the story
of our grandfather, the traveler;
we spoke of the departed,
and heaven on earth.
The storyteller swapped when plates were brought
and the stories were stoked by heat from the hearth.

Hours later, our mothers fed and happy,
we leaned closer and whispered to each other.
“You look exactly the same,”
I spoke from the heart.
The lines of her face hadn’t changed, but were cleaner,
a jewel crystallizing while we were apart.

“Oh, my lost-long cousin!” she said,
in her throat was a laugh,
in her eyes was a spark;
In my self I sensed two wires reaching,
latching, catching,
jump-starting the car.




The two girls with sensible shoes
approached me with dated complements,
so I slid down the park bench
for Sister K and Sister N.
“I don’t believe in anything anymore.”
They deciphered my words,
as I studied their actions:
the way Sister K sat like a pillar
and Sister N stared at the visage of her partner.

Sister K pulled a book from her bag
then gave a preamble
that was about as long as 15 minutes of coming attractions at the cinema.
Surely nothing could live up to this, I thought, glancing
at Sister N, whose eyes remained transfixed, her lips parting.
Sister K’s voice was steady, finger wedged between the hidden pages.
I understood they thought
to give me something precious.
so I received it as such.

They showed me the painting
of their prophet in the woods watching
as one god-man pointed to another,
the way Sister N’s eyes pointed to Sister K,
and I sat basking
in her projected glory.