Echolocation: A Compass for Drowning

Plant 3

By LeAnne Hunt

“Start a bath for the moon / A coffin for the sun”—Brendan Constantine

If wishes were horses, we would all swim beneath their hooves,
dragged by desires stronger than the moon’s pull on tides. Instead we
dead-man float through goodnights wound with regret. We drumbeat
waves back with driftwood from our shipwrecked selves.

We are rotten with want.

We gather ivory and then bemoan the radio silence in our seas. Each
salt-kissed year drinks us down; we are time’s liquor and happenstance’s
half-blooded concubine. We fish for proof of God as if a jellyfish were both a lantern
lighting our path and an umbrella against the rain.

We forget we are in an ocean.

We pick up shells on the beach to hear the roar and tune out
the shallow cochlea we carry in our heads. We cannot
be silent long enough to hear our own waves or wait
for the searchlights flashing behind our closed lids to guide us.

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