Scrying sand
Arlene Ang

on tiles where the hourglass shattered,
schoolgirl knees like closed eyes under

wide flounced skirt, the gypsy presages:
blood oranges under a setting sun,

the shadow of someone’s arm, lapis
lazuli, decapitated lilies, alopecia

and the grizzly bear rug. Instantly,
you regret the scent of coffee from

the percolator. She appears at random
in dreams: the ballpoint that spouted

the cut wrists of a neighbor’s daughter,
lipstick on mirrors, fractured moon through

blinds. She insists mountains beyond
the window are lopped breasts; and did you

really think they’d keep your nipples in a jar?
The note on the fridge says: We’ll be back

for dinner.
It is yellow with age, like
her hands on the small of your back.

When was the last time you used plain
flour? The gloves are aquamarine latex.

You pick up pieces on the floor, gritty
nanoseconds that used to tell time.

Some nights you finish early, head
still pressed against the pillow, and fall

into subzero sleep. Some nights she lets
you glimpse the salt crust on her cheeks.


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