by Hannah Yerington 

Which way?

Head to the Spirit House, where calla lilies are left for the dead,
take the bovine field, last cliff to the left, enter through the ocean.
Did you come here alone?

Once, I held to someone I loved. I made driftwood from their bones and planted it. I watched ice plants bloom from the seaweed of their skin. I told them,
I’ll feed you nasturtium and novels/ tuck you into the kelp bed/ strain the edges of your salt dreams with a cheese cloth.

[hums gently]
And did they grow?

I lost them to the branches of a cherry tree, when the whole city was pink confetti. You can walk bare feet on the concrete, asphalt soft with petals.
[stares at ground]
You can walk in a pink haze till you arrive here at this shore.
You can lose someone in that much blossom.
Why do you stay here?
I want to learn to swim worthy of the sea,
to see soul in drift and have no thought
of collection, of canning, of caring, of keeping.
And did it work?

[places empty jar on the sand]
It’s hard to know when you hold everything.
It’s hard to know when you hold nothing.

Hannah Yerington is a writer, a Jewish Arts educator, and the director of the Bolinas Poetry Camp for Girls. Her work has been published in Nixes Mates, Alma, and Olney, among others. She is an MFA candidate at Bowling Green State University. She writes about many things including talking flowers, post-memory, and the occasional seal.

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