good salthttps://i1.wp.com/barrenmagazine.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/lc4.jpg?fit=1920%2C1440&ssl=119201440Chestina CraigChestina Craighttps://i1.wp.com/barrenmagazine.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/chestinacraig.png?fit=96%2C96&ssl=1
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
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.
Chestina Craig lives in California with her cat. Her work has been published by Crab Fat Magazine, Sea Foam Mag, Button Poetry and others. She has presented her work at The Presidents Commission on The Status of Women,
The Young Women’s Empowerment Conference, & more. She has a bachelor’s degree in marine biology and sometimes pets sharks or hangs out with octopi. She hopes that one day she will only be required to wear flowy clothing, study the ocean, and get paid to have too many feelings. Her chapbook “body of water” came out October 2017 with Sadie Girl Press.