for Wendy Singer
Teach me the story of the sleepless body.
Even the past is ugly, living as it does in the thick cells of my body.
I was lonely, all the long winter. Skin
the poorest fence between the cold world and my body.
The fisherman with his sharp hook, his taut line, a rod he is proud of.
Come to shore, I call, I have a handful of bread that might be your body.
Lace, you breathed against the window, and the ice let go,
ran down the glass into the house’s quiet body.
She said: When I gave him up, when I gave back the baby,
there was an empty space in front of my body.
No writ, no photograph, no stone with rules. Only memory,
running like a current of blood, through the creek of my body.