The idea of god displaces the current
life in favor of the next. This isn't the real
shore or the real water leaning
against it like the book between them has been removed.
The real is the angle of absence, or so you
say. I am on the sand. I am with my wife,
daughter and dog. It is some version of dwindling
light. We are wearing heavier clothes,
and the object the dog has been retrieving
is thrown onto a patch of water
water collapses around as if it were the hinge
of some carnivorous plant. Into which
the point of retrieval spills until it has passed
without the she of the dog noticing,
but my wife notices and tries to pull the point
closer by swimming farther out
after the dog, she comes after, becomes the second
side of some constellation I'll someday ascribe them to,
infrequent in sky from the privilege
of sand, which is where our daughter keeps
the blanket from catching in the wind. There, now, is
my wife in the process of out and my daughter
in the process of on this shore that solidifies
as the t falls away, so that I feel his
wife drowning, and his daughter unable to
survive if I swim out, if I risk saving and fail
to retain my adherence to this world—
the same world that sends feedlot into the car when we drive
to your previous, Midwestern body, the same
that gives me the ability to recoil
when I get too close to what would turn out
the fabric of my hippocampus like a pocket,
and the same that accretes in inverse proportion
to my experience of it that's left
a part of the water encroaching is what your body displaces
closer to my feet as if spread by the broad edge
of a butter knife—the lone stoplight asking us to pause
before proceeding, the dilapidated street
at the end of which, your parents—spreading toward me
in the water a color I could never describe,
not for lack of shedding the words from my mind
now impinged upon by the cry of my daughter
being pecked at by the cry of gulls
until I can't hear her any more
than the sound of my body dislodging into ocean.