The Person of the Place

We keep paperclips in the corners of our rooms

never knowing when we might need to attach

ourselves to something new and every

time we place our bodies

on the floor we raise our hands to caress

the air. Do we still imagine that ghosts

can carry weight, that we can feel the air

as it tries to embrace us back? And could

you please do something for me when

the weight becomes too little?

Tell my love he knows nothing

of stone walls and steps and if he

is right handed than he will never fight his

way to somewhere else. Tell him I am

a curved piece of wood, a tree made

to the shape of a bow. Tell him I am practicing

the memorization of his fingers, of his touch,

and that I am collecting stones to keep in my

mouth. They taste of cold and water and

earth and nothing of him.

We are trading our cards back and forth

between us, the paper cuts sting at first

until they don’t. The wheel of fortune

was my favorite. I folded it into the shape

of a tiger. Placed on my tongue, it tasted

of honey on the bark of trees.  We line ourselves

up on the floor, body to body, and reach for

the ceiling. Do we still believe that the ghosts

will sleep with us soundly, that they are not

restless in their dreaming? And would

you think to do one thing for me when

the nightmares wake your ghosts?

Tell my love he knew everything

and that I am the one cradling

shadows, praying for the air.


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