Stepping with bare toes across
meadows of balsamroot
I glide swiftly on grasses
soft from last night’s rain.
Quietly slipping between rocks
I meet the gush of spray;
with full pupils down,
tiny rivulets cascade my bare shoulders.
Droplets form and cling precariously
to my hair, responding as I shiver;
a flirty audience of aquilegia formosa
quivers with the steady rush.
The voice of the waterfall
is a mighty quenching of everything;
a gushing spray of explosion and tranquility, reverberating
like the sound of a mother’s heart in a growing womb.
I didn’t come here to grieve, only to soak
in the majesty of a paradisiacal place;
but my heart remembers and wishes I could have buried you here,
instead of where you ended up, in pieces, on porcelain.
I feel embryonic in the moment, wholly enveloped, naked, treasured.
Coming alive in the lusty boom, I scream, and moan,
and grieve, leaving everything here on these ancient stones—
laboring with the violent echo of women’s loss before mine.
I hold hands with the knowing barren wombs
and weep the deficit that will never feel your sigh at my breast,
your pink mouth to my skin, see the shine of accomplishment in your eyes.
They know how I feel—you were brief, but you were mine.
I let you go, but still carry you with me as I push through;
emerging back into the sun of life, weaker and stronger,
spent, and refreshed, sprinkled with pure minerals,
with lilac and wild lavender, and just a hint of baby’s breath.