Grief

By: Mary Elizabeth Vance

standstills memory,
carves out the present till you become whom its mother has made you.  Let it make you. Let it move you deeper into cadence by nightwalks            pressure points            icewater confetti         formed. Let her
thicken under your tongue where you hid prayers
channeled for a time into bodies muddled
in smoke rings or other bodies.
Before there were prophecies or confessions                                                                                         there was silence. Before you broke into the dockyard I was there, and nets gathered fish and spacejunk without bending water
the same water you gorged             as if its clarity negated density                                                       and you drowned.  When you start forgetting names of everything you love, cradle                      in night and uncover the dark. Retell forms in textures,
cups of light and measures of wrinkled dusk                waving out in Egyptian cotton, Scottish wool, Turkish silk,
____’s raploch hands pleated from gripping the sheets too hard.