Melancholy Hyperbole

Poetry about longing.

Approximation

sd copy

Approximation

 
The grandfather points out
the witch at the market
 
who comes to buy mushrooms
and stare at postcards.
 
She touches the sand dollar
wind chimes, retracting
 
her hand as the dry bodies
musically crash. She strokes
 
the sharp scales of fish lain
in shaved ice, tries to discern
 
the words caught in their gills.
She has forgotten the art of
 
existence, the plunges in
green froth and roilings in
 
sand. Each night she stalks
the interminable shoreline, never
 
remembering quite how to want.
The waves that once served as
 
a million lovers bite at her ankles
and soil her skirt. She settles
 
for gathering fragments of
white shell and boiling them
 
back in her kitchen with song.
She lays them in rows, where
 
they darken the tablecloth, places
them onto her slow tongue and chews.
 
She is taking Communion, eating a proxy,
hoping its likeness will cancel the void.
 
None of these things are the ocean
itself. But she has forgotten its taste.
 
 
Catherine Kyle is a Ph.D. student in English at Western Michigan University. Her writing, artwork, and graphic narratives have appeared and are forthcoming in The Rumpus, WomenArts Quarterly, Superstition Review, and elsewhere. Her hybrid-genre chapbook, “Feral Domesticity,” is forthcoming from Robocup Press this summer. You can learn more about her at http://www.catherinebaileykyle.com.
 
Image found here.

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Categories: Poetry, Themed, Unfortunately I can't love you

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5 replies

  1. “Each night she stalks/the interminable shoreline, never/remembering quite how to want.”

    I really liked that line. The entire poem is wonderful, though; the imagery is so well placed and not at all overdone. I love this.

  2. The imagery and triggered emotions are delightful. Moved me wonderfully.

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