Distance, Re-figured

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The main character in Water, Bleed Away is Alice Kittering, a world-renowned poet who undergoes some horrific events in her youth that change her forever. Specifically, her two brothers drown in a flood, but there’s much more that scars her.

Part of the novel features her poetry, which she hasn’t written until now. I’ll post the poems here, and when I finish the book, they’ll be integrated into the narrative.

Distance, Re-figured

I sense you in the evening
when all is not lost,
when the clock makes sense
and moments are not yet
packed in tear-salt

and you are still living,
miraculously breathing, your
lung vibrant and expansive,
not invaded by water and darkness,

a holy bellows that channels
each movement as your thin chest
rises and falls, creating
a rhythm as old as consciousness
and as tender as new life.

As night continues,
I feel the distance,
you on one side and me
left burning here,
re-figuring my own breath,
wondering how much I have left.

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