by Mar Alvaray
the sand kicks up and
i didn’t bring a bag i left it
with my mom i put the seashells i find
inside my shoe and carry both with my left hand
and the river water turns salty where our lips meet
and i’m still scared of the deep water
where i can’t see where i’m walking but the sun
beats down on the shifting crystal and on my back the sun
kisses my face and my shoulders and when i get out there is sand
and salt in my hair
and fry oil and butter runs
down my hands and my elbows when i take a bite
and in the dark i hear cicadas chirp and I can smell
the salt and wind even inside and there’s bodies piled snoring
in adjacent mattresses and hanging from hammocks to fit and sweet mangoes
fall from that tree flavor bursting across my tongue
and i haven’t met You
and i miss You.
Mar Alvaray (they/he) is a nonbinary lesbian writer and artist from Venezuela. They use artistic mediums to tackle their complicated and uncharted mental landscape. He can be found on Twitter @bigand_small.
This poem was the winner of Overheard's poetry contest, with the prompt being "Endless Summer."