If I tell my mother she is the sky,

what I really mean is that I’m the pond

my father built her. What I mean is

I watch the way she rises and sets

in herself. I mirror every cloud

that mars her features. I darken

to match her windy movements.

What I’m saying is my surface

catches her light, but when she

grows overcast with gray,

my entire face disappears.

I’m saying the two of us

are always facing each other

and wincing away at the same

time. I’ve absorbed into myself

every color she’s taught me

When I try to reveal my

drowned leaves to her,

she can’t see through

her own reflection.

What I’m trying to say is

I can’t stop taking

her shape.

Racine Watson

Racine Watson is a graduate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha, where she studied Creative Writing within the UNO’s Writer’s Workshop. Her work includes fiction, creative non-fiction and poetry. Her creative-nonfiction essay, “The Five Ways I Left” is forthcoming in the 13th Floor literary journal, 2022 edition.

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