A god, not my father, takes me
to the beach, where I lie down,
thinking what is the place called
where the sea wets the sand? I press
my fingers into it. The answer doesn’t
come. And he has many sons and none
of them are me, nor the daughters, nor
his wife, his lovers, and still he holds
his camera like a pinched nerve, result
of repetitive motion. Too much watching
and not enough doing, or the opposite
of that. He scratches his beard, asks
if I am ready to be made
semi-permanent. Of course,
I say. We both belong here
forever where the air catches
itself and we are alone together
with only the sun-glare, the salt.
He lifts his hands. I sand myself
against the waves.
Ellie Black is a recent graduate of Hendrix College, where she held an internship with the Oxford American. She was recently a semifinalist for the Boulevard Poetry Contest for Emerging Poets, and her work is forthcoming from Split Lip. She received a fellowship to attend the 2018 Bucknell Seminar for Undergraduate Poets, and currently works as a poetry reader at the Adroit Journal and an Associate Editor with Sibling Rivalry Press.
Artwork: Brooke Shaden, Grains of Water