Olivia Mitchell

I hoped, once
that those swifts we watched-
wings tearing across smokestacks and sky-would hold us
in our tenderly woven bodies, those moments when our intersections
were more than knotted words.

I memorized those swifts,
stirring away from the place
where they met air currents and moved
to the sky,
memorized hopes to split my arms
fissured hands and
divide my peripheral vision.

Now, distanced from you,
vision intact,
I give up my place
all my fingers knotted
in the chain link fence.