“The Sea Itself” by Seth Jani

No one comes to talk to you today.
The ships blown in from the sea,
The purple tigers defanged by water,
And everything we know of desire
Skinned like a cool fish.
From the hook of blossoms
Above the door
A voice resembling the crooked
God of merchants
Asks for remuneration.
You almost die casting
It from your house.
It takes blood and poetry,
And the last preserving grain
Of glowing salt.
Somewhere in all of this
A woman made of coral
Slipped in. It may have been
Through the window
On the seaweed-scented wind
Or maybe through the staccatoed cracks.
Her voice is two-thirds surface light
And one-third subaqueous sun.
If you listen she might lead you
To her kingdom of rust and stone,
To the ocean’s glassblown heart,
To the lord of shipwrecks
Who, inversely, is also the lord
Of floating things.


Seth Jani currently resides in Seattle, WA, and is the founder of Seven CirclePress (www.sevencirclepress.com). His own work has been published widely in such places as Abyss & Apex, The Chiron Review, El Portal, the Devilfish Review, the Mithila Review, VAYAVYA, Gingerbread House, Gravel, and Zetetic: A Record of Unusual Inquiry. More about him and his work can be found at www.sethjani.com.
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