Set me adrift.
Watch the crackled paint of my fledgling gunwale
lurch from side to side, bobbing like a nervous buoy,
my hull blinking its uneasy S.O.S
toward a shrinking sun.
Do not let the rope burn your delicate hands.
Throw it instead, sloppily. I will heave it hand
over hand back into myself, this soaking, umbilical
appendage; a heaving stillborn corpse
Let your lighthouse skim the air
above my head, where the tips of my arms
wave, limp and resigned;
your duty done.
When light from my burning frame reaches
you – a blaze across darkness, churning a
Wash your hands in the salty brine
of your bitter content.
But when you summon me again from the safety of your
shore – gleaming, expectant eyes, shouting at the wind,
your hands covering sensitive eyes
against too much light –
You will stand until the blue sea fades to murky black,
and still until the rising mist ascends
to beckon forth your wrinkled brow,
and all you will hear,
across the rippling fathoms
that swallowed me in tatters
and spit me out again
whole – a refugee upon
another shore –
© 2017 Kristina Moulaison
Photo credit: Moonlight, Wood Island Light by artist Winslow Homer (American, Boston, Massachusetts 1836–1910 Prouts Neck, Maine), 1894