Blue Flag Day

Aimée Sands
| poetry


                    The Coast Guard hut flew a blue flag
            when the water blew thick and dark,
but you were inured to the pleasures

                    and risks of ocean weather,
            pruning and sunning, tuned
to some other turning, whisk

                    of planets in motion,
            blue plaid against blue,
the urgent rubbings of husks ¬

                    rasp, cusp, remote as a church
            you took us, nevertheless
to the sand, cooled after dusk

                    and lay with us, just that once
            pinwheeled around you
naming the constellations,

                    sash of the Milky Way,
            luster, glitter, monsters of the hoven deep –
what cluster, riven, and gasp –

                    the bed that clasps you now,
            your limbs flasks slowly filling
with milky, useless fluid,

                    I drag you out to the night,
            fabric of Cassiopeia, elaborate and false –
what black sand comforts you,

                    what caustic and silver reckoning
            flicker of instinct
tendrils of thick, white hair –

            I call you, call you back from your brink –
once again you refuse me.

Aimée Sands is a MacDowell Colony Fellow and the author of The Green-go Turn of Telling (Salmon Poetry, 2012.) Aimée’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in Missouri Review Online, FIELD, Poet Lore, Beloit Poetry Journal, and other literary journals. She holds an MFA from Bennington College and is co-director of the Brookline Poetry Series, where she also leads poetry workshops and master classes. She is the producer/director of the independent documentary What Makes Me White? and teaches at Bentley University.

The Treacherous One