You make it look effortless,
opening, closing your eyes,
vowing to rise from sheets where you did not
sleep, buried to the chest,
heaped with grief and waiting for the stones
in twos and threes, small handfuls
all night long. When mourning comes,

daylight flips the hourglass
and off you go again: the bathroom,
kitchen, daily barre where you rehearse –
kamikaze, breath knocked out –
expressions, smile-shaped
echoes in the glass, enough
invention to appease the waiting crowd.

Rustling overhead, a strange bird keens and caws
until you recognize the strangled cry
and look. He lifts, cupped between two hands of wind,
climbs a thermal and gains height, your own weight
hoisted on his wings, your own limbs, for the moment, light.