scavenger.

Laurence White

the blink of refracted copper light lays its
gesture of a body over sea cliffs. does the sun
love everything he touches. where is the
sorrow, when will it be small enough to fit in
my palm as though it were a seed. grief is
fecund ground i know and, my body is still
crying from the sharp lifelessness of winter.
i am terrified of reaching. last, it was a false
light who met my openness with a gossamer
devotion. i don’t want to remember his hands,
how they were the sun’s hands, having no
idea if he ever loved what he touched. i would
rather die than know the answer. (i loved what
i touched, with everything i had. that is why i
fear an answer.)
silence is the space between the knife and a
doorway. beware that silence begs and, also
leaves his body. that he will talk about the
slow sickness that came before he cut her at
the roots. he will leave out the confession. he
ate from the rot like a feast only until a less
burdened womb appeared to him with its slick
openness. a promise of containment and easy
lullabies of innocence. i’ll set down the word
abandonment until i’m strong enough to
swallow it whole with sea water and of
course, wash it down with the blood of mine i
fear i spilled at the altar of a false image.

Laurence White (they/them) is a non-binary Kentucky born poet who lives in Santa Cruz, California. Their latest publication appears in the anthology What Keeps us Here: Songs from The Other Side of Trauma. When Laurence is not speaking or listening, they are in silence or searching for its stillness. There you will find them.

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