losing the word by Sharon Ackerman

losing the word

 

what is prayer

but our limbic words
offered
to an uncertain
trajectory,

the cave images
given language
from our dark cities.

i remember your prayer
outside memphis
whispered just beyond
my hearing,
lips moving beneath
that crumbling
billboard

the veil between us
never thin enough
to reach a hand
through

your words,
their white dust
prophecy
dying muffled
against my palm

 

12 steps in california

 

he is wary

though the treatment
center
is close enough

there is a lost
coast
inside of him,

the jagged reach
where his brain
walks in circles
arriving back
always

beside the whale
who died
from lack of sleep.

he will stay
until the wide fish
expels them all-

friends he once knew
their hips broken
fighting angels
on the sand

poems spilling
their salty brine
from each and every
mouth.


Sharon Ackerman
Sharon Ackerman earned an M.Ed from the University of Virginia and works as a pain management nurse at UVA. She was one of the winners in the Virginia Poetry Society’s national contest 2014 and is a member of WriterHouse.

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