The Turn

Words beckon, and I resist their pull.
Wary of the double ruse of syllable and sound:
Plotted. Charted. Chanted.

Before the humming in my throat tremors across my lips
and I start to parse their mesmerizing incantation,
trace a dimming memory into a color and a shape
I can hold in my mind’s eye
by spelling the spell until it finally spells out
and spills out of silence into sound—

What I may have heard or what I think I hear—
of faint voices gone over, away, echoing from afar,
yet so far away from breathing
their sudden loss catches in my own throat.
Sound sucked back into silence. Swallowed. Gone.

I cling to this abyss of silence.
A tear dwells. Brims. Falls. Tastes
of such loss I have no word for it.

When words again beckon . . .
Wary of the double ruse of syllable and sound:
I plot. I chart. I gulp. Turn words into silence.


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