Because my current city is 123 square miles in area
           and contains 1 square mile of water, some 0.93%
                      that is not just wind shifting in its solid way;
           because I grew up on a creek off Big Otter River's ramble
that goes unnamed by the map I have, and because we'd call
           its water not creek but crick, the stream,
                      filtered sun like the gaze of a hazel eye, and brighter
           than the barbed wire that drew its snarl
along the edge; because the waters
           of a memory are thick and bled-
                      into like an unfixed dye in washing; because
           the dreams I remember are of water brackish or clear,
or of boats blessing their way along the chop,
           especially in the hypnagogic space before—
                      maybe it's that sleep moves that way, or night,
           or a napped afternoon, and so the fitting dream must move along;
because I remember being young on a whale watch boat
           in the Bay of Fundy, from which I looked down
                      (unadvised, dizzily) into the smooth muscle of water
           before, when the sun burst out, knowing
the imprimatura of the saltwater was strange ocher
           as bladderwrack, it's bright and underneath,
                      even if sometimes kept from view by low light—a stain
           is there below, and the light hangs toward it
like strips of cotton voile, blowing;
           because names are given and given back;
                      because water swells, curls, and recurs in the way
           of the ghost autograph, for the making
of which some 1910 directions ask
           that you sign your name along the fold of the paper
                      with a full pen of ink, and then double
           the page over
—and they composed
skeletons, ghosts, little tests of symmetry, these signatures
           with spindling legs and arms like eddies
                      given for the purpose not of reading but of seeing
           something else and unfamiliar, the accident
as of water pooled in a low place on the floor;
           because of the changes given to the blue;
                      because I run a bath when full of breath, when sick
           of breath, and the cat comes closer
to the water every time, to look in like
           something's there, other than a person at soak
                      at a touch at the muscles of the back
           which creak inside like a wooden ship—say
I hummed low and green in cooling water, or say
           it can roll its sweet path into my bed, and tell me,
                      if I were conscious all the time I'm living,
           would I recall more days in water? I could call it
another way of being held.