I stand at the edge of Ozette to glean, off-handedly, the ghost I sometimes lean into, coat wide open. It’s hard, goodbyes—the boats tap the chains to their anchors and I keep hearing: Gone. Gone. Gone. I imagine the plastic umbrella I used to own and the day its pole shoved beyond its wet canopy. How it lifted, fighting the air, in flight. Now the tide is rolling its shoulders over the coast. Dormant creatures decide to leave their homes, floating to the surface for the moon. In this light, everything is just beginning to be identified, labeled, loved. Waiting here, trembling. I didn’t want to go.
-- Willie James is a poet living in Chicago, IL. He is a poetry editor at Pacific Literary Review as well as the co-host for the Filling Station Reading Series. He was the runner up in Rhino’s 2017 Founder’s Prize poetry contest. His work has appeared in Rhino Poetry, Pageboy, as well as the Mantis Review.