Construction Literary Magazine

Fall 2020

Turning Into Water

Turning Into Water
Photograph via Flickr by calafellvalo

Once I stood in a dark closet for hours
            holding a fan made of finger bones.

How my pelvis says, No, I don’t have a door.
            When it’s actually a kind of tearing,

your fingers hooked into my clavicle,
            its dip filling with water. Add salt

and it starts to burn. When you’ve come
            to me in dreams even for so short

a time, I turn into waking with a hole in
            my side. How I loved loneliness

if loneliness could mean I left myself behind
            in that dream,
canaries whirring from

my mouth. How this feathered shadow says
            submit, and my body unforms from

the inside out, heart fluttering in its bone-
            cage, those last red wing-flicks.

How we start as constellations,
            lines someone imagines between

tiny worry dolls. How I’m the child
            waking to bears and the face of the old

woman who keeps them leashed. How
            swallowing your pulse, its shift and wiggle,

is your dance on my tendons, so my hand
            plucks open and shut like a puppeted

mouth. Every little hurt is a honeycomb
            sliced open. How you follow my wet

steps into the forest where six children wait
            with a cauldron, as the body unjoints.

How I’ll sleep again through my making,
            the outbreath choking your canary throat.