Iron Waves This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

January 29, 2012
The day I lost you
to the ocean

we were sitting, working our feet in the
soft mud
for the pleasure of it,
building drip-castles along the water's edge.

You would not sit still long enough
for me to rub the sunscreen into your
butter-brown shoulders;
they were still white and slick as a seal,
calico sand set into them in
fabric patterns,
it made your skin the wrong texture.

I was distracted –
a lady with a wide-brimmed hat
was skipping rocks into the waves;
her legs were long and
seashell pink.

And then you were gone;
your perfect pinprick fingertips left mud prints upon my thigh;
cloudy water was seeping through the earth
to fill the hole you had left in the

My heart thrashed in my throat like
a trapped bird, while other,
found children caught fish in the shallows –
ripping out their gills with makeshift hooks,
throwing them at one another,
silver bodies twisting and slapping like
dancers in a show.

“Lie still, fishy”

“Shut up, fishy”

I ran along the edge of iron waves
both looking and too scared to look for
your curls
twisted in the seaweed.

And then there was a tug at my arm.

A little girl
with hair as wispy as a frayed bell pull and as dark as a burnt match
looked at me with eyes as bright as snow,
a perfect muddy hand upon my arm.

She said my name.

I looked back at the ocean,
and then back at the girl.
I blinked,
and then I realized it was you, or nearly –

once you lose someone,
it is never exactly the same person who
comes back.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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This article has 2 comments. Post your own now!

BrandiBooth This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Feb. 23, 2014 at 10:08 pm
So great. I adore your work
SmileyRayyn said...
Feb. 5, 2012 at 5:43 pm
This poem is really strange, kind of creepy in a way. It reminds me of a book called "The Replacement." It's so intriguing!
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