Love, the dogwoods are fish shaking loose
             their pale scales.

I like it when you’re not here
             so I can tell you what you’re missing:

a skein of black dirt stretched
             like lace across the kitchen floor

and through the windows
             two birds tussling in a sea of felled petals.

The river was once a place for me
             to drown myself, tying to my ankles

the weight of what I’d lost, then jumping in:
             Tensaw, Paint Rock, Coosa, Sipsey,

Cahaba, Mobile, Chattahoochee, Pea.
             Nothing could have stopped me

from my own agreement with regret.
             Now the river is for showing me

the uselessness of sharp edges,
             how each thing that curves away

is not a body resisting but a pleasure
             waiting to be reciprocated.

When you come home, there’s nothing
             that won’t be waiting for you.