Invisible waves of the moon cause the tender
chamber of a bay oyster to undulate like a gauzy
ruffle. When I sing low to my hollyhocks

their wooly stems & satiny petals
stretch faster & further. My voice
drifts into an orange burst of petals

& the pale yellow stamen shakes off
specks of pollen. Today at the pancake cafe
I confessed to Paula in-between coffee warm-ups

& syrupy platters as she worked the breakfast
rush, stopping briefly to catch
up with me as I polish off a short stack, one

egg over easy. Tears pulsated behind
my eyes like bantam hearts. Sorrow
finding a listener. I felt a variation in her body

as if the diction of my pain could swim
like a black-necked swan into her stride & gently
slacken her pace. In a shivering spectrum

I can’t hear or see & like buried roots
intertwined, we briefly harmonize.
Guitar string. Piano key.