Tomorrow is sitting on the edge of my sternum
bluebird on a bone branch, perched and waiting–
and I ask–do you still sing? I hear nothing
but my breath, crystal avalanche tearing up
from my lungs white and frozen and screaming.
I would call this a song if it had a name.
I would call this your name if I could remember it.
Sometimes when it’s almost tomorrow
I think I’m a girl again, or still, or becoming
young the way bud becomes flower, opening
full and round, suddenly something out of air.
There are mice running back and forth through my stomach–
many tiny footsteps until they are one tumbling feeling
in the center of me, dizzy wind beneath my heart, its branches
caught in the storm. If you could fit in the atrium
of my heart, I would keep you there and feel your voice
saying my name out from my core. I would call it
my heartbeat while you search the shadows for an exit,
find only dusty blue feathers stiff
in the corners and a trail of footprints
so small you’re not sure if you can trust your eyes
–how can something this tiny be a whole thing
who wanders through this room in my center
leaving footprints whole and trailing, as real as mine.
I try to make this a song, want it to get stuck with you
like the warmest night last september, air so hot
it oozed into my lungs, and the indent of your cheek
waited on my pillow, the kind of heat and wanting
that becomes part of you, seeps to the bone,
to tendons and your aorta, sternum, stomach–
I would give this words if I could reach them.