swim

Artist: Jack Tarpon

“…we are always fish in the belly of the whale of earth.
We are encased and can’t stray from the house of our bodies.”

—from “Spring,” Jim Harrison

for Kristie McCleary

But what if you could find your way
out of the whale’s belly,
kick through humble earth
and emerge, your grit-caked,
fishy self, finning through air?

What if, set free in another form,
you don’t need to see or even breathe?
Unbound, you surf currents of wind,
swim toward whatever catches
your fancy, the flicker on the edge—

the jasmine blooming on the fence,
the smudge of fat-blossomed rose,
a loved one’s face you know by touch.

Aim for the moon,
you, the untethered, the unblooded.
There is no need to become;
you have arrived.
You are there.

About janishaag

Writer, writing teacher, editor
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