The wind that makes your hair grow faster
opens a child’s mouth full of strawberry and sand.
Slow and sure
on the scales of the ocean
the child’s head outweighs the sun.
Inside the wind –
a blister of a church,
its walls thicker than the room from wall to wall
where the wind shifts shade and light
as if they were two rival chess pieces
or two unmatched pieces of furniture.
Inside the church – such a stillness;
a feather which floats clenched in a fist of dust
becomes a rock by the time it hits the ground.
Organ pipes glint like a cold radiator
caged in a case carved as a tree, its branches
tied up with a snake.
Organ pedals, golden and plump, are the tree’s only fruit.
It is all about the release of weight.
The player crushes the pedals like grapes underneath his feet.
My body, like an inaccurate cashier, adds your weight to itself.
Your name, called into the wind,
slows the wind down.
When a body is ripe, it falls and rots from the softest spot.
Only when a child slips and drops off a tree,
the tree suddenly learns that it is barren.
Copyright © 2011 Valzhyna Mort
Used with the permission of The Permissions Company, Inc.
on behalf of Copper Canyon Press.