Her rising tide lifted and carried
Me to places I never imagined
I’d visit again. Seeing myself
On TV was a traumatic experience.
I thought I had a twin trapped
Behind the convex of the glass screen.
She smiled, then wrapped her blanket,
As thick as a dreadnought, around me.
She explained that the person on the
Screen was not my double, but a
Recording of me from an earlier time.
I had grown and matured since then,
She said. It was meant as adulation.
I wanted to believe her.
I still dream about her and I
Walking along a beach together.
We never held hands; the dream me
Would ponder swinging his hand
Towards hers and “accidentally”
Bump into it, giving him the
Opportunity to intertwine his fingers
Into hers. He never went through
With his plan, though he imagined
Her hand, like an opaque messenger
Against the moonlight, beckoned to him.
They, her and the dream me, would walk
Near the water’s edge, listening to the tide.
They would come to the same place
Every night and stop.
She would stare into the moonlit
Horizon. He would admire the contours
Of her face, and grow jealous
Of the stars as they licked her
Cheek’s strong bone structure.
As the coming tide curled and uncurled
Itself around their ankles, he would wonder
If he kissed her would she slap him.
He would inhale courage from the
Salty sea air, and then lean his face
Towards her profile. I always woke
Before he found out if her skin
Tasted like chocolate or licorice.
A. J. Hayes
Give a poet a pen