as if imagination were a net

in the language of children, seeing things

that are unseen, plumbing the depths

to capture the sun, the four winds & the moon

too soon, a mind muddied with blind faith &

desire, a diet of omission, with its substance

of things inveigled, as if from a dream

the rest of her, sequestered

as a child, she had a gift, a vast forever &

everywhere at once, like staring at neon stars

painted on the ceiling; she saw things

she thought lived in the sea

looking into fathoms deep water & seeing

fantastical things from the other side

when she grew up

the gift vanished, just like her parents

said it would & she saw the world

as it really was, with all its saccharine lies &

tricksters that persist

the here & now present tense

armored in a carapace of denial, like cherry pits of

restraint, or the arresting governors on U-Haul trucks

her worry beads of conscience

rummaging through a mouthful of sunflower seeds

for one grain of sustenance

the sexual whispers of Puritan taboo

sanctifying a calibrated red zone cautioning abstinence

in the face of adolescent hormones &

the horizontal seduction of peer pressure

guilt, became the broken key

in the unlocked mind, begging audience

for the apathy that goes along to get along

a society of obfuscation, like toothless particles

of need hoarding the truth: it's complicated,

that which she lay down in the center of &

good as dead died