Sky is always sky. But sometimes rock
is wine, irony, the view
the tidal pool affords us of ourselves
when sun is kind and cloud

Anything we stick to, really.

We are mostly mollusk. Except our byssus
is fear, gratitude, the cloth
we make pretending it’s not ours
since blame is weight and home’s

Usually, there’s balance.

Sea I thought was block of salt
dissolved so single grains

could carry messages from far
away. We could turn and close

our shells, comfort ourselves,
repeat the lie that distance

is ignorance. An unsteadiness
still washes over me,

when I think of what I heard,
when wind was dead and sound

was living: what we hide
from comes from what

we cling to.


Thomas Mixon was a featured writer at Mass Poetry’s U35 reading series in Boston. His work has appeared in Rogue Agent, Plainsongs, Sweet Tree Review, and elsewhere.