off the shore of oneself as in . . .

sometimes you can’t stay on your own mainland. 
some story of exile, unique each time: a home 
you feel apart from rather than of 

the re-negotiation among space and rulership. 
an aimless god, his insistence on
a fantasy of order 

the number you call to confirm the time, that tells you 
where to go by putting you there—horizon beyond 
the heart you know best—so it hurts, so you learn. 

the aimless god in you, his lucite throne, 
the space you’ve made, what you could 
imagine from whence you came 

Copyright © 2023 by Renia White. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on January 6, 2023, by the Academy of American Poets.