by Melanie Carter

The boy floats. From the edge of the pond
you watch as he drifts farther out. He is small
in his red-striped shirt and he mouths words
for everything above him: tree branches
and all the planets. You think, He directs the sky
this way
. He breathes, and his chest, pressing upward,
keeps the sky aloft, and beyond it the sun, his
favorite marble. A bird glides overhead
on its rusty breast. It is a speck where the silver
is scratched from the sky. The one flaw
in the back of the mirror. The world is imperfect.
Today this makes a god of you. Through the opening
you watch the boy flying on the water.
His breath makes his shirt sing. You sing with it.