Louise Wareham Leonard

Ash Starling

You know I am the only one who can save you
and you come to shore splayed on the white tops of waves
mumbling, unable to look me in the eyes
then pitching yourself into a warm dry bed in this desert I disappeared into.
Escape is for life. Country buckles to country –
blue seafloor winks to green mountaintop
And wasn’t that you riding the quake last Christmas
before the tsunami skittled the children into the ocean with their tiny hands?
You took the paradise of our youth –
buoyant seas, rose sky, carnelia trees dark in rain –
and left it listing, a welter.
Don’t see, Brother? – we’re better together than apart –
You’re no hitman –
but entertainer, clown, chief distractor
Go home,
tell them I’m dead.
That cloud of ash you see in the sky, winter mornings –
that murmuration of black starlings – it’s me.
was born in New Zealand and grew up in Manhattan. She has BA from Columbia College, New York and is the author of the short novels Since You Ask, Miss Me A Lot Of and 52 Men; her poetry collection Blood Is Blood was published on Kindle 2022 See:. Linktree/LouiseSays