i am soft in the center.
don’t tell. i dry out
and wave my angry arms around.
but even my spikes are soft once i come back to life.
you see this once you are close up; you make this happen.
my daughter’s tiny hand used to spread out
over the hill of my breast while feeding.
my chest would rise, and fall—and her plump hand,
her whole plump body—would fill up
like a happy balloon.
she lets herself get very empty these days;
she likes the feeling
of being light and airy,
of floating—playing with non-existence.
in dreams, she flies weightless over the sea from which she was fished.
i, in contrast,
am so full. full of worry; full of fear;
full of love and gratitude and joy.
full of food, wine, sadness, thoughts;
full, at times, of empty.
we are each the star in our own galaxy.
things revolve around our soft openings as they are commanded;
other things shrink, collapse, get sucked into a black hole;
and some things laugh as they expand—like a wide-open mouth—
glinting beyond our greatest imagining.