like love

I was tired, Mary said, though I’m not sure why
because all those men were there
to pull the nets for me. I was just standing,
she told Sarah, briefly holding everything
they hauled aboard.
Mary watched Sarah drop
two yellow eyes of yolk, watched Sarah’s shoulder
tense into the turning of the whisk and knew she knew
the taste of all the breakfasts she had not yet been served
better than any other thing she would ever know. That’s all
I remember,
she told Sarah, the bacon, the coffee, the citizen smells
arresting whatever girlsoft salt might have loitered
this late on her tongue. That was the dream.
I can’t tell you much more than that,
Mary stretched
into the solid fact of morning, just that
it made me tired, holding things.



Author of What to Eat, What to Drink, What to Leave for Poison (Red Hen Press, 2006), Camille Dungy has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, The Virginia Commission for the Arts, Cave Canem, and the American Antiquarian Society. She is assistant editor of Gathering Ground: A Reader Celebrating Cave Canem’s First Decade (University of Michigan Press, 2006). Dungy is currently Associate Professor in the Creative Writing Department at San Francisco State University.