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hank and i press our hands

hank and i press our hands
into the wet sand
and listen to the waves clap
at the edge of the shore.
over there, the sea is white
and angry around the cliffs.
momma says never go over there,
so hank and i pull our fingers
through the sand. we sketch
each other’s bored faces.
“i have an idea”
there’s this lady in our kitchen.
she looks like momma.
she washes the dishes every night,
cleans the counters every morning.
sometimes, the light gets caught
in her hair. it’s like the time when momma's
apron caught on fire.
sometimes, her eyes might shine
for a while like they see something.
over the sink there’s a window
staring at the beach not too far away.
the lady likes it.
sometimes, she’s there with her eyes
burning, with her eyes like they’re waiting
for something to run by.
but they aren’t
and nothing ever does.
our crooked lines run all
over the shore. our eyes
in the sand look as sad
as the lady’s: the rains
have come. now, the ocean
curls over itself, white
and ready. when it’s still,
i can hear hank in my ear.
he tries his best to spook me.
though momma says not to, i peak
over at the cliffs, at the tiny wreath
with red ribbons ripping in the wind.
there’s hank.
there’s hank’s idea.


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