That Morning, We Burned Toast
Missing sunlight, she totes stale darkness from room
to room, opening windows in invitation. She hums
private names for despair and hope, for gratitude.
Her new flesh tastes of grainy smoke and sugar,
wears a fresh scar. No broken limb, and life swirls
and stutters. She fell, and fish still swim in the sea.
Inside keening winds, mists can slip swiftly into torrent,
a wounded diver can flounder. Beneath the surface,
diffident waves swallow faces and swollen fingers.
Every day, translucent shallows lure the unguarded
with brutal ease. Past faded warnings of riptide, hidden
depths, drift of gentle power, one bather floated.
Flicker and alternating current buoy the survivor:
memory, language, dream. A thousand suns shimmer
distress and revelation, one hundred billion neurons flashing.