By Laura Stott

April 6, 2020


Think about the spirit of an animal that could occupy a house this big—the whale. There goes my first born, gliding past me at the pool with her dad in a man-made river, smiling and carrying the sun like she was born to do, making laps, there she goes again, wearing an octopus that floats. A mayfly lands on my arm, a messenger from another world filled with rivers, glass and ancient things. All the faces I’ve ever known are floating past now too—my third-grade teacher, my grandmother, the cashier at the market in L.A. Seagulls circle like vultures and bodies disappear into slides. There my daughter goes again, waving her hand as she rounds the bend. The surface of the pool is the color of tropics and chlorine. Footprints evaporate all around me. A toddler runs to the edge of everything and is scooped up just in time. Beneath all our feet, beneath arms waving, cheers and screams, the water opens wide, down there, a whale’s massive tail disappears into the blue, its eye blinks, its body rolls. Sharks dance in the light, then disappear. There, a flash of iridescence. A fish. A silver school of them a mile long. A song yawns out of the deep.


Laura Stott is the author of the book of poems, Blue Nude Migration (forthcoming, Lynx House Press, 2020) and In the Museum of Coming and Going (New Issues, 2014). Her work can also be found in publications such as The Rupture, Barrow Street, Kettle Blue Review, Western Humanities Review, Sugar House Review, Copper Nickel, and Memorious. She is an instructor of English at Weber State University.

Photo courtesy of Egor Kamelev from Pexels.

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