Waves, Tissue, Blood

Ben Spivey

In the wind. Looking at my hands in the light of the sun. They were fences in the spaces of nothing, keeping nothing in place. Holding that space, similar to the way my father held his money. Using my hands, I built a woman with seeds from the earth. The woman had clear skin, a spongy smile, painted nails. Yellow, green, and blue birds would land on her shoulders, in the slow sky. The leaves were changing colors. Sand was in the wind, it covered the ground, for years and years, becoming the earth, the grass, dirt. Until the sand was the only thing in my body, my wife's body, too. We made love without the ocean, barely touching, becoming distant with the growing weight of the sand tugging our bones, our ligaments, our marrow, caving our chests. My hands, from nothing, buried my father's money under a compact of snow. What I hadn't buried, my father stacked above heaven, he climbed the pile, laughing. It toppled on our heads, cut our tongues. The nothingness of time sifted through my fingers. We watched my father fall. He closed his eyes, feeling the wind, laughing, he stretched his hands up, up, up, reaching for what he made. The snow melted under the sand, he crawled, digging and laughing into that place. The sand wrapped him like a blanket. The sand was up to our necks, holding us in place, biting our faces. We lay our cheeks in the cold, sunless sand. The curve of her smile melted as layers of her skin were removed with time. I shouted in her direction, the wind and the sand took my voice away from what was left of her ears. Our bodies pulled apart before we forgot our names, draining us into the others, filtering us through sand, rock, dirt, and snow, seeping the last drops of our blood and sinew into the ocean. The stars receded as our parts sank further into the world.

Ben Spivey is the author of a novel, Flowing in the Gossamer Fold, forthcoming from Blue Square Press (2010). He has words at or forthcoming from Everyday Genius, Titular, Dogzplot, Corduroy Mtn., and others. He has two cats. He lives in Atlanta and blogs at www.yourbrainsblackbox.blogspot.com