Twigs collect by the side of the path. Wild flowers space themselves. Pigeons respond instantly to being chased. The ground rises to the tree. If I look through the boy—to loss, to a future, to else— nothing is enough to hold the ground into one place. This is your foot, I say. But people don’t talk like that. I watch people gather their faces into thoughts I can’t hear. This is the space between us, I say while waving my hands to make the distance.
With the Boy, in the Dark
The boy is interested in black holes because he doesn’t know how to say death death death. Just, infinite dark. Event horizon. Singularity. The boy teaches me how to mouth the absence I won’t imagine—the dark keeps going without time so it can’t hold words. One of us will enter it. And then another. But the boy makes an exception: rats can escape anything, are a synonym for what I call meaning, what you might call light.