Danusha Lameris

These days we like to walk the old neighborhood,

down the criss-cross streets by the dog park, past

the harbor, past Linda’s Seabreeze Café, past my old house­,

a not-much-to-look-at beach shack built for summer, 

where the ghost of me still tends my old life: roses

in the garden, laundry on the line, my son in his wheelchair,

head tilted up as I spoon that morning’s purée.

I can still hear the neighbor warming up his diesel truck,

the clack of kids next door setting their skateboards

on the sidewalk. At night, the saltwater lament

of seals as I lie in bed looking out the window

at the shadowed green. It’s been a year. Or ten. No—

twenty. A man I did not know then holds my hand

as we pass the front yard where the new people

have planted fire poker, day lilies, Mexican sage.

I miss the way the light came through the living room

at midday. The pine out front they had to cut down

because it wanted to lift the house up by the foundation,

into the air. I thought there was another life, a better one.

My son’s eyes were dark as earth. We had to hold him close

at night in case he had a seizure. I would have said, then,

it was torture to love someone you couldn’t save. But

what did I know? How lucky it was—how lucky

it always is—to love someone at all.



Found In Volume 52, No. 03
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Danusha Lameris
About the Author

Danusha Laméris’s third book of poems, Blade by Blade, is forthcoming from Copper Canyon Press. She is also the author of two other books: The Moons of August, winner of the Autumn House Press Poetry Prize, 2014, and Bonfire Opera (Pitt Poetry Series, 2020), finalist for the Paterson Poetry Prize and winner of the 2021 Northern California Book Award. She is on the faculty of Pacific University’s Low-Residency MFA program and lives in Santa Cruz, California. www.danushalameris.com