Sea Change

By Sasha Pimentel

Morning, and light seams
through Juárez, its homes like pearls, El Paso

rippling in the dark. Today I understand
the fact of my separate body, how it tides

to its own center, my skin crumbling from thirst
and touch. The sun hangs

like a bulb in corridor: one city opening
to another. When did my heart

become a boat, this desert the moving
chart of my palm? And when did pain invert

the sky to glaucous sea, each home on each hill
rocking? I would give my lips

to a soldier if only he would take them
as sextant, our mouths an arc, my tongue

the telescoping sight between. Below
such light, the measure of boys

swimming cobbles, their stomachs
dripping wild stamen. See

how they are clutching to their guns
like lovers, as if the metal could bear them.

Morning, and still in umbra, my dog
and I walk, her tongue a swinging rudder.