last week, she asks me in the car,
“but how do you know for sure?”
it’s evening, but the sun isn’t going down.
instead it’s turning the mountains
golden-brown, baking them.
and i concentrate on driving,
like i’m barely 16 and
this is the only test i can ever imagine failing.
sometimes i feel immovable,
like my faith is an ocean filling my fingers.
when i raise my arms, the tide goes out
and i can see what’s under the water for miles,
every hidden secret, every grain of sand, every lost toy.
sometimes i feel like every breath
is a gust of wind, hurricane-strong,
that will crash the trees of my elbows
into the roofs of my sides.
on those days, it feels to precarious
to make sudden movements, so i wait until
the storm is over.
“it’s not about knowing,” i say eventually.
it’s about believing that holding still
when your mind is at war with your heart
will make it better. it’s about studying every
lost memento that surfaces on shore when you
can see it clearly so you can remember it
it’s about knowing that the sun will move eventually.
it’s nearly 11 p.m., and the mountains are still golden brown,
and she nods.