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Phantom Heart

PUBLISHED: December 3, 2020


This is the sound love makes—
tolling of a tongueless bell, its wagging
and wagging despite; its whole head
teeming with wind. The sound

of waiting, but the waiting buoyed 
in silence, and the silence so
blue. Sound I have known well,
and known well enough to fear.

I know fear has its own well—
bottomless depth. These days, I go
diving, diving, and this, the fall of it,
the winter that will, and must

follow, hemming its gown, border
of my country. My country! My thirst
for you, this acred blue lapping my shoes,
and still, my country of thirst for you.

This, the sound of rain thrusting
against your rim, and my head
cocked back, my mouth cracked
open, my soft cave made well

for you. This many days between
our bodies—enough to call it
memory, build a brief masjid,
unhinge my knees. I am standing

in the foothills, traveling back—to ask
a sentence of your shoulders, bright
Himalayas. Night loosened and falling
against them, skin a riversleeve

of moonlight. This many ways to pray
to you. Legible, with no name. Sound
of that name, caught in my throat
like its own country—my country!



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