Day 21: Semi-Tropical

Window is how we frame seasons,
a pane of coolness, a sash
of leafage, we collect
ourselves in color, door
wreaths of pine and holly.

Having abandoned my place
of birth, riding the bus as far
north as it would take me,
coral, whelk and olive
in my pocket,
arriving to frozen water rigid
in broad daylight, snow everywhere.

There was no drinking away
the taste of guava, grits
or fried mullet, mangoes
and avocados populated
my dreams, a longing of sand.

Once we went to the sea
all stone and coldness,
that was winter, my blood
burned, ice filled my eyes,
words jagged as ice, gulls
mournful, wind of exile.

Returning home with the thaw,
wet season and the tilt
that flowers the great storms
out upon the waters, names
recited, catalogued by destruction.

Eventually dry season settles in,
not something to call winter,
wind off the Gulf, windows
open, the benediction of place,
amongst shell and mangrove,
where no one was waiting.

Here, Moon is always singing
of sea, we are not her children
yet are comforted, there is no
singularity in this mouth, candle
lays its flame on tongue, we seek
the shore of season, archives
of leafage, that may save us
from ourselves and the impenetrable
motion of days, waves eroding us,
a full reliquary of shell and sand,
a sea filled with our names,
great flights of migration.

Peach Delphine is a queer poet from Tampa, Florida. Infatuated with what remains of the undeveloped Gulf coast.Former cook, loves camping. Can be found on Twitter@PeachDelphine

5 thoughts on “Day 21: Semi-Tropical

  1. I love the opening of this poem, the window with its ‘pane of coolness’ and ‘sash of leafage’, just a hint of the season in the ‘wreaths of pine and holly’. There is such a contrast between ‘frozen water rigid / in broad daylight, snow everywhere’, a normal winter for me, and the writer’s norm of ‘guava, grits / or fried mullet, mangoes / and avocados’, giving the poem colour amid the ‘stone and coldness’. I also love the shift of the return home to the dry season ‘amongst shell and mangrove’, and the ‘sea filled with our names’.

    Like

  2. I started reading this, and I thought this must be Peach! The sea and the seasons–and–of course, as someone who hears the moon sing, I love this:

    Here, Moon is always singing
    of sea, we are not her children
    yet are comforted,

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ah that feeling of abandoning your place of birth – I know it well. I love the imagery used here to conjure up the differences between places and that feeling of not belonging, longing for home.

    Liked by 1 person

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