“In Time, the Seawater Swells in His Gut” by Lisa Grove

A boy emerges from the whale’s head,
the stink of spermaceti on his hands,
the stink of day-desire, the stink of dead squid.
The cold gust of ghost tongue tufts his hair.
My hands hold fast at the rough clicked night,
hold fast at the heads hairing with curls.
The earth hums Quick, laddie! Drop anchor, here!
Tape yer constellations to the ceiling, yar!

You navigate by way of a paper Polaris.
I disembark on sands cold
as the carpet under my toes.

Lisa Grove’s work has appeared in Beloit Poetry Journal, Poetry International, A cappella Zoo, and elsewhere. She lives in Los Angeles..
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