Dry Land

Prairie Fire - - ANNY TANG -

af­ter gro­cery shopping, Ma tastes a storm

on her skin. tucks plums un­der her red scarf,

tiny plan­ets warm­ing against breast­bone.

sky bruis­ing like a smoker’s lung, the blueshift

of pud­dle un­der our feet. the way Ma’s

gait slows, like un­learn­ing a waltz she once

loved. some­where, a gut­ter spits a hur­ri­cane

through rusted teeth. some­where, a street­lamp

braids a home­less boy into light. he spreads

his arms like wild­fire to dry the city, traces

his cheek­bone to de­ci­pher a braille of rain­drops.

each crease of his face a ravine, a whis­per

of land­slide we’re not meant to know.

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