Displaced Water

Somewhere from the diagrammatic stolon

of overgrown seagrasses, a voice carries

to the surface—to live radical compassion,

not just speak of it. The spiders still have not forgiven

me. The fish kill cited in the civil suit just a bead

in the course of stories scrolling by in my palm

like air pockets in rain—over 600,000 displaced

in Sri Lanka, two hundred dead and counting.

This is late May, 2017 AD. Flashbacks

of headlines some years back—

that heatwave which claimed some 2,000

in India but can this be more than read, felt

as the steadfast lamprey must feel, mooring

the stones of its own deathbed in the cool

lunar hollows? How it must feel, to prescribe

a burn, to watch the Oroville overflow with

predictions, the denial, no more water

in the pail! No more moon in the water!

What blame can be placed on the government

now? Someone says relief and means it.

Suppose blood could be set afire

with a simple question. Suppose we could

touch through the screen. Suppose speeding,

solitary, down the breathing highways

at the center of me, a course burns

its engine towards a future where hope

has long gone become obsolete.

mm

Seth García

Seth García is based in Albuquerque, New Mexico, where he is currently pursuing an MFA in poetry. He is the recipient of the North Street Collective Summer 2017 Artist Residency. His work can be found in Slipstream, Zone 3, and Boston Accent, among other places. He is a friend of trees.

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