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The sound of a hush

Nina Rowlands

I’ve dreamt that I’ve floated the lengths of a field in England:

the sky is plum, the hills tear and trench,

as the earth rips every limb and tendon of his corpse apart

and spills his dull ichor into the spinal column of the spring.

And like a magician’s medium that was his final vanishing act.

Hush was the only word in my lexicon,

only deep breaths rolled off my tongue.

the tears stayed condensed in my eyes,

and I love you stuck in my throat like a lisp.

The boy that could not be loved.

The anti-Narcissus,

for he ran for the mountain at the sight of his own reflection,

he left a ripple in the puddles of summer radiance and scared the sun away.

But what am I?

I live through the reach around the mountain,

and embrace the Shepherd boy whose sheep will not dare look at him.

And yet the tears from his bony face spill through the seams

to plant a garden which I shall look at instead,

somehow that is how his beauty lives.

Shall he stop crying, I shall have to leave the mountain,

what would I be then?

But I’ll know,

From the weirdness of his words to the nooks of his knees, my boy and I are forever

Only a few have tried to gaze upon me, but it’s just my boy and me. And he doesn’t listen.

I am the wind, who can only say hush.

But my ears bleed for your raspy voice, leave me.

Let me dissolve into the waves, and my soul shall live in the enigma of a thousand storms,

let me scream, let me cry, I shall never whisper.

Why, we shall never have to be quiet again, my hideous Shepherd boy. Dissolve into the

ocean to know that no one in the universe loved you but me.

Know that you are loved by lighting,

Thought of by thunder,

Embraced by ecstasy,

But you just didn’t understand.

When you turn your head and you can hear me,

and the other way I am silent.

I’ll say, I love you; do you love me?

But all you’ll hear is…


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