Published on Academy of American Poets (https://poets.org)


Pathogenesis

Sea of strangers exhales.               

                                              Something natural

 
reorders us                without consent.           We reorder         

 
            the coastline.               My therapist:         

 
                                                           what do you feel 

 
 in your stomach?     In your chest?    I feel nothing.  Nothing 

 
matters. I touch nothing.    I’m angry.   Stop

 
asking.                 Have you ever stood on a shore, 

 
felt the water change heights?  Felt the wet sand rush to squeeze

 
your legs too tight? 

 
                               In each of us:

 
                                            possibility,   a knife wedged 

 
           under the mattress, a new strangeness, an undiscovered way 

 
       we could touch each other, a bird never heard before 

 
   singing, an untaken path, 

 
                                    or genesis.

Credit


Copyright © 2022 by Aliah Lavonne Tigh. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on September 19, 2022, by the Academy of American Poets.

About this Poem


“I wrote this poem in response to a prompt poet Stalina Villarreal provided for our writing collective. Originally, the poem began, ‘The joy of standing in a crowded room,’ before continuing with ‘Sea of strangers. . .’ I wanted to remember the euphoria of a pre-Covid June dance party. I wanted to remember the pleasure of being influenced and moved by something outside of me. While this was my intention, the poem that emerged wanted to look at the complexities of our connections.”
Aliah Lavonne Tigh

Author


Aliah Lavonne Tigh

Aliah Lavonne Tigh is a mixed Iranian American poet.

Date Published: 2022-09-19

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/pathogenesis