we used to lay beneath each Sunday,
hungry, hands like mouths on our answers,
like tarnish on silver: didn’t we know
the roots would remain—rely on the shade—
permanence and god and love? Gentle wind,
didn’t we know invincible? And what
do we know now? Her father owned guns.
My father was one. Watch her walk away,
steadying the ark of herself on the bark
of Chinaberry Trees when the wind blows.
Always, see the brilliance falling out of
her, falling out of me. I can still feel
the fall. We used to know invincible.