Frozen in a block of blue

you see yourself preserved

orbiting the earth

holding an invisible string

to us, your kin.

You shine at night,

an astronaut of love.


From your sickbed, you ask me

with smiling eyes

blinking back the sting

if this story is insane

and I shake my head.


Eight years later your metaphor returns

like the man in orbit

with redoubled significance

circles drawn

around a shared center.

The age rings of a tree

sing like vinyl

if you let a needle

skim their grooves.

Our record player spins

a gravelly voice across the room.

“It’s so hard to tell where I end

and my father begins…”


I look down at my hands, your hands

writing these words.

The shape of our fingers

and their distinctive prints

legacy of skin and ink.


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