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luís soares

Blog do escritor Luís Soares

Alison C. Rollins - Water Lilies

I am thirty,
wading out into a deep
body of water.

My favorite form of
loss is to swallow.
What have I to lose

this time around? Last July
my legs were draped on either
side of my husband’s head.

My thighs hung like a scarf
about his neck, his hair
burrowed into my privates.

I’d always longed
to see a dolphin’s vagina.
As a child, I wanted to be a marine

biologist. At Sea World, I rode
on my father’s shoulders
held on to his ears for dear life.

I—upswept in his current,
his arms filled with his own blood.
Now they are gone, both the father

and the husband in this story,
their closets emptied save for
tins of shoe polish and handfuls

of naked wire hangers. I am Medea.
Euripides takes up my voice
like a pebble for safekeeping,

beads of water run off my face
like grief. Afloat, I rehearse
how to mourn like a stone.

My breasts skip atop the surface,
aqueducts of milk rooted
beneath the skin. The river

holds me in its mouth
like a song. I in turn
leave it, troubled.


Water Lilies” has never been published and by no means does it feel “completed” to me. It is a poem that I have set aside to potentially revisit or use as a graveyard to extract lines from for another future work. At this point, “Water Lilies” is just as unfinished, in-process, and chaotic as my daily attempt to stay alive.