Now it is gold everywhere; gold in the leaves and in smears along the stone of the houses and slipping in the houses, and dancing with the shadows to form patterns and the patterns, how shall I say, making sense; being “at a glance” in one of the thousands or millions of arrangements that do not defy physics; light and matter behaving themselves, at least mostly, and this is how I know that my eye is healing; that the blood-splash in the vitreous that cast onto the world its own garbled designs, interrupting reality with its shadowy churning, is fading, though in truth it is not fading; in truth streaks of blood will always stain the innards of my eye, but the mind inside the skull reforms! It sometimes can happen that the the mind inside the skull, over thousands of hours, detecting mosquito, oil-spill, spiderweb; the cloud that is not there, tells itself, “That is not there,”-- “that is not reality;” and drawing out of itself some little eraser, gently begins to run eraser over spiderweb, so that a little more gold and leaf and streak along the stone and house and gold slipping into the house, and darting into shadow--comes into view, behaving more or less as they should, as dictated by laws of light and of gravity; as if reality is king. But should I not call this process--magic?
I have wanted to be one of the deep water women. Not wind-gnarled, foam-flecked, not tossed by flimsy sheets of light but good and far down, with barnacles lacing flank, shin. With fish scales in my hair. Down there in the crusted dark I can hear nothing. Bloodbeat against silence. My mind sharking.
-- Mara teaches at New York University. She received her MFA from NYU and BA from Duke University. Mara holds a New York Foundation for the Arts award in poetry and her book, 'The White Year' was a finalist for the Jake Adam York prize with Milkweed Editions. Mara's work can be found in American Poetry Review, Hanging Loose Press, jubilat, Sixth Finch and in other journals. She was raised in Lome and in Philadelphia.