good salt

good salt

good salt 1920 1440 Chestina Craig

the oceans love language is gift giving
which means every time you swim to shore
alive, is a present
every time you are more survived than the previous version
of yourself,
you should remove the wrapping paper
peel off the bikini in front of the mirror
like you are summer citrus always showing
where the sun and salt have touched you
better than a bruise, the ocean

swallows all the broken glass,
the youthful liquor bottles ,
takes in the thrown picture frame,
the unlucky mirror,
my happy clumsy hands on a wine glass,
& gives them back soft,
now something that was never ours
which is to say, the oceans love language is also acts of service
to turn a knife into decoration,

how long will it take to unmake me sharp
a body begging to melt, become touchable
how many baptisms must I take before I am good salt?
before I am worthy of decoration too.
I once called the ocean ‘something that takes so much’
& I’ve never sounded
so much like an ungrateful daughter.

Header photograph © Lorraine Carey.

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