Blue, Kind of by Eric Gamalinda

It is November. I keep thinking of a boat, and the water, and sailing far away. I am thinking of a memory of a past life: a tail instead of legs, and my long, long hair. Maybe I am meant for the sea.

Blue, Kind of
Eric Gamalinda

                  How many blues has the Mediterranean conjured?
                  RAFAEL ALBERTI

And now they’ve all gone back
to the source that is more blue
than anyone has ever seen,
everything I lost before I came here,
everything that’s cast back on this shore.

Because I wanted them so much,
because I dreamt too hard,
because I said all the wrong words,
because I’ve worn out
the consolation of prayers,
the undertow of longing.

The moon at daytime
still thick with honey and minerals,
the flood tide of rare
and malleable metal.
There must be logic
far more human than the sea,
although its mourning
finds no shore,
although it keeps on breathing
like a being whose compassion
we are only beginning to understand.

Long ago I had a question for everything
but now I know better: everything goes
and only the questions remain.
I must have been drawn
to the impossible alchemy,
the silence with which
all things let go
and become water.

***

This morning,
after a storm,
the mist reveals
the jagged peaks of the Sierra Cabrera,
like blue ghosts stirred awake
by poisons in daguerrotypes.

Every day it is the same,
the ancient cabrero crosses this path
with his billy goats and a shaggy dog
nipping at their heels.

I have come to rely
on their presence,
marking time by the tinkling
of bells and the red dust rising

and the way the newborn
always hobbles away,
its legs still soft
with the memory of water.

***

This will be the time of miracles,
all that we need to know
will be revealed in dreams,
in water, in the desert,
in arteries, in stones.

We will understand
the persistence of trees
and the agony of rivers,

we will wear the silence
of eclipses,

and in our poverty
there will be much to give
and more light than we can imagine.

—

From Zero Gravity by Eric Gamalinda, published by Alice James Books, 1999.

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