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What I want is just one chance to be inside your life. Not to share the same supper, to learn the good news before your favorite sister—and I don’t mean the kind of understanding that comes after lovers decide to scuttle their fear, lie together and find in time the meaning of art, or children, though that will be good enough—working it all out in the morning over two bowls of cereal dotted with blueberries, fine dark stars in a milky cosmos, one for almost every dip of the spoon. I'm talking about a night we spend in the same body on the same smooth stones on the bottom of the dry river when a storm comes. Our two ears wake to the sound of rushing water, hearing as in a duet the same whoosh before we are seized by the waist and for the first time my skin is your skin, submerged and invisible, and we are dragged by the legs, scraping our back, our mouth full of sand, my mind yours in its urge to swim. It would happen fast, like magic, though I’m not sure I’d grasp, even then, what it is to be you.
Copyright 2020 S.B. Merrow. A version of this poem was published in Nimrod International Journal in 2018.