another siren song

They told me to be silent, but I could never hold a tongue for very long; they told me to be patient, but I couldn't wait any longer; they told me to be still, and sit somewhere where the light was clear, but I'm always shaking when I try not to, and I always liked the bottom of rivers and oceans, and cemeteries are better at night, because that's when and where things speak.

So I should have known, when I was sure I was in the center of the heat of it all, I should have known that I was closer to the sea than I thought, and that the things I was hearing weren't lizard songs, coyote songs, vulture songs, the story of the origin of heat, but something else entirely.  And I should have known that there would be something they asked for eventually, something that can't be paid by the things of this world, and I should have known that I was not lost at all, and knew exactly what would be coming next.

Because I've been through these rocks before, I've seen these waves in all their tides, and I understand what it means when I get so captured by the things that I think I see.  I don't see things that are in front of me, they disappear.  What ought to be and what used to be change places with the things that are on the way, and I can't tell the difference between my own hands and the mouth that holds the world.

But when you come floating through the waves, with your newly shorn hair and your button sweater, your wet pages and your wet openings, I wake up and remember what I came here for.  I came to get caught here, because I came to talk to the sea, because I have questions, and I have things I need to get off my chest.  "There are things that are torn to break," they say, "there are threads that don't sustain their ability to register delicate sensations when they are pulled too thin, and you are a thread, pulled too thin, and when you don't hear, you forget who you are supposed to be next."

"But your blood will have to guide you in the dark, and when you're too far from the ocean, we will bring oceans into the very same blood; you've been sleeping again," they say.  "But when you wake up again," they say, "you'll meet your own melancholy face, and there are those who will tell you that you have gotten older, and you'll think they're lying, you think that when you sleep you don't age a minute.  But your blood spins you like a whirlpool in your dreams, and the things you remember will be more than you wanted to know, because you always come here to learn more than you thought you wanted to know."

I'm starting to get to that place where I can't hold my head, and the rocks are softer when the sun is going away and the songs are pulling me under, and I'm afraid that I might drown, but there are always other plans that have nothing to do with what I want, or what I think I need.

Mother under the waves says, "There's a version of you under the grave, there's a version of you under the sea, there's a version of yourself before you stammer out your next drop of blood on your lip, & there's a version of you that's covered in wax and copper. Like everything or anything, when you need to rely or depend, lean on the water holding you so dear."


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