— Huan He

Star blinks twice,
              I hold your
sandpaper face
              and tell of
an ancient curse
              when two boys
lay under a
              mango grove
and spun into
              a goddess so
bright, the Sun
              lit itself on
fire, flamboyant
              as the waterlily
in distress, no—
              she is the
mistress who
              birthed me.
Nameless but
              not forgotten,
I carry
              her sea salt
eyes. On the
              fifth year of
mourning, she
              comes with gifts
for her kin
              who stare into
space, eyes twinkle
              in worship
of a pain
              so sweet it
takes two breaths
              to see the
shape of her

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