I learn to sink my teeth into lithe.
I was embodiment of cotton sweater
out of dryer. Unable to resuscitate.
Form of one half-length sleeve
and the other grasping to its
original size. Unwearable.
My mouth was lighthouse,
revolving back to the cotton ratio
as if repeating fact could alter
the situation. It was 100% cotton.
Someone put it in the dryer
and it wasn’t me.
I return to the facts the way
walleye use the coordinates
imprinted in their bodies
to reproduce in the exact
region of their birth.
It’s a more noble relapse.
I close my lips over the lantern
rested on my tongue. Closed mouth
as cure-all this time.
Closed mouth as the absence of light
that strokes the sobriety
growing from my brow.
Closed mouth as diving long enough
into Lake Superior to witness
the purpose of homecoming.
M. Wright is an educator and poet living with his wife, Dylan, in Minnesota. He is the 2016 winner of the Atlantis Award and his poems have recently appeared in The Penn Review, Saint Paul Almanac, UCity, Wildness, and Jet Fuel Review. M. enjoys camping and fishing along the various North Shore cities of Lake Superior.