Bodies of Water
We are made of the ocean,
spiked with salt and crackling
bones half gone to sand. Within us
is the whole wide sea, swimming
fish and fragile reefs. Sirens
aren’t made up, they tuck
and knot between our ribs—call us
to our depths with songs
that ring of memories. We tell children,
Never turn your back to the waves
not for the unknown, surprise
tsunamis and creeper currents, but for all
the knowing stored
like sunken chests within our marrow.
What goes challenger deep
rises again. In every particle
of our everything, the calcium
that builds our skeleton, we remember
the brine that came before, and all
the leagues of which we’ll go.
By Jessica C. Mehta
Jessica (Tyner) Mehta is a poet and novelist, and member of the Cherokee Nation. Jessica is the author of ten books including the forthcoming Savagery, the forthcoming Drag Me Through the Mess, and the forthcoming Drag Me Through the Mess. Previous books include Constellations of My Body, Secret-Telling Bones, Orygun, What Makes an Always, and The Last Exotic Petting Zoo and The Wrong Kind of Indian. She’s been awarded numerous poet-in-residencies posts, including positions at Hosking Houses Trust and Shakespeare Birthplace Trust in Stratford-Upon-Avon, England, Paris Lit Up in France, and the Acequia Madre House in Santa Fe, NM. Jessica is the recipient of a Barbara Deming Memorial Fund in Poetry. She is the owner of a multi-award winning writing services business, MehtaFor, and is the founder of the Get it Ohm! karma yoga movement. Visit Jessica’s author site at www.jessicatynermehta.com.