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  • Jessica Lee McMillan

Roots Wash Themselves in Cloud


Image by author


looking at clouds swirled with crows

in branches reflecting on the river,

I lost calibration, knowing

the clouds should be up

where I stop to look — stopped looking.

forgot the eyes are delicate instruments

and they read manifold planes

in non-mechanical ways.

inward space projects

emotions into mirrors of possibility:

the sky may be buoyant ground

and roots wash themselves in cloud.


the horizon is a rough gage.


askew butterfly, the heart is,

and eyes are perfect false witness,

aperture to ambient stories in the glass

the horizon, the self

in the reflection,

continents of cloud and blue branch

and crows crow tall tales.

imperfect symmetries are held

where roots rasp through airy soil,

where my flapping heart is, winged.


Jessica Lee McMillan © 2021

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