What I want is to bind you, steady you
into sand, listen to your whispers, petal-tongued,
pale buds dropping, your fingers opening
and closing at the ground. See the stake and gauze
I carry, how I moisten the earth before I probe
deep between river stones and roots—
this is who I am, though I don’t live here anymore.
Trim the overwrought branches and new growth,
lift the canopy, the weight of you,
struggling too slim arms from the dirt.
That if I leave a year, two, I can come back,
sneak into this yard I no longer own, find
the house, rake the brittle debris around you
and balm this arid space. Tremble as I close the gate,
start the rental car, the weed choked alley brushing
the ticking under belly, where I once was.