Where can you be soft, she says,
to the jaw locked on snatched back
words, splintered bone of grief
to these eyes wanting water yet stung
with the wary wait, these shoulders —
a country of others’ sighs, dust
of wayside dreams.
Where can you be soft, she asks,
of these sharpened ears, match-struck
chest, this quaking world on edge.
If you let go, the body
will give, open
up, unraveled tongue
and waterfall spine, flow
of heat and truth.
Naming it isn’t necessary, what finds
the splayed throat, upturned heart.
Here you are safe, resting
in this motion. Here you are all
yours and all you need to be —
this poem, lines on a mat
facing home, a flower
in split stone.