A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature
Mariah had two thin arms.
Mariah grew like a globe
until the world, pink and screaming, fell
from between her legs
and where she walked, the world walked with her,
both of them glowing, both of them
with gold hair like the glint
of light at the tip of a salty Atlantic crest.
I still see her moving through crowds
at the farmer’s market or near the sea,
her hair a beacon until she turns,
and I see that it isn’t Mariah
until I remember that she left earth
while listening to the lullaby of a needle.
Oh, Mariah, my life is now an apology
for how I forgot you, and let the tide
of my own life take me out to sea
when I knew that you needed me.
Let my last years here on earth
be the work of a sieve in which
I find fiercely shaped children, singular
and lost like shark’s teeth upon the shore.
Tayve Neese is the author of Blood to Fruit (David Brooks, 2015) and the editor of Trio House Press and The Banyan Review.