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  • the first time
    a boulder
    swallowed whole

    the second time
    a knife licked
    slowly sawing

    the third time
    just this space
    upside down

    every summer
    my mother
    visited me

    every summer
    she would

    at some point
    no more tears

    only this crustacean

    years later, in miami, i awoke to the sound of my lover, packing
    his bags for San Francisco, it is still dark, half-light, near sunrise
    hazy, with the detritus of sleep, he kisses me farewell, his muffled
    footsteps, the door closes with a creak, and suddenly this pain
    jolts me awake, inside and outside, succumbing to memory, time is
    compressed, blurred, the boy, the man, merge, indistinguishable
    and this bludgeon, hits me, smashes through the marrows, i leap out
    of bed, in shorts, and T-shirt, i run outside to the beach, the sun
    is rising, the sky is flamingo pink, and my skin seethes in this sorrow
    this weeping, that i had long forgotten, those moments, right after
    my mother vanishes at the airport, the plane, when i bit my lips
    from crying, those embezzled tears were returning with compound
    interests, after all these years, the pain, it was only now, finally, leaving.
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