say it. like you mean it
by Irene Toh

Calm is the feeling of big rock
not ousted by ravaging waves,
dampness seeped into boulder’s
blunt edges, slippery-like
fins ruthlessly circling,
smelling blood.

It is a numbness forbidding
love, the wintry cold smoking
plumes of fog. Michael asks,
must it always be like this.
Achingly beautiful corpses,
walking hope.

Say you don’t need cheering up.
You do. Say you won’t disappear
into the ether. Say ether.
Say it. Like you mean it,
holding a book, curling dog-eared
at the edges. Say I love you so much
you won’t bail.

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