WHICH NAME CAUTIONS THE TONGUE
by Robert Okaji
No gravestone marks the river's corpse.
How do we fill that emptied crevice, the untouched bed?
Words lie unmade in boxes on the floor.
Shimmering, it dots its final black point, looks up.
Light traveled eight minutes to rim this bowl.
I emblazon one name and cannot lose the other.
The bumbling cicada seeks passage through two closed windows.
To some you are protein. Nothing more.
This day, too, will evaporate.
As night absorbs us and the sky, marking our collective body.
Robert Okaji once owned a bookstore. He lives in Texas, and is the author of five chapbooks, most recently I Have a Bird to Whistle (Luminous Press, 2019). His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Vox Populi, Claw & Blossom, Kissing Dynamite, Panoply and elsewhere.