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When brushstrokes

were climatic periglacial 


when water was still 


I saw ultraviolets

fluorescing in circles


your hands

tearing the sky

and holding it.


Not much

to recall but

conches those spiral ears

flashlight sun 


how you



and came

once and once

and for all.


There is 

a wave building 

within me, it sings. 

I make noises, forget wisdom

in close quarters, forget 

singularity oscillating,

forget the shape of memory—

just “I love” now.


More songs hum about 

pain, never the relief after it. 

Come closer, 


wash this syntax with your hands.


In the soap a reflection

of you.  

Tina Xia

Duke '23

Student at Duke University.
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