Scales sizzling in sun, she arches her back,
eyes damselflies harmonizing with salt breeze.
Outcrop of rock her sanctuary,
she lowers herself back into the tide, dizzy with heat
and half-blind from the mounting yellow globe.
Turtle grass climbs to a spit of sand.
Overhead a kingfisher screams, plunges
past periwinkle and apple snails
to pierce a fiddler crab sliding along the shallows.
Her webbed hands grip barnacles, she stretches
for one last gasp of air, fin twitching, then she’s gone,
furling water into froth and fizz.
I hate being an only child.
Surrounded always by those older than myself,
I learned to turn blue-hairs blonde again.
The night I went to outer space,
I leaned on a star, took her light for my own.
Diving off the reefs in Fajardo,
I passed anemone and fire coral,
stole its heat, and on cold, dark nights
you ghost my dreams,
unravel tightly tucked memories.
So I clutch star and coral,
burn and blind the void.
The 2013 Blue Light Press Book Award winner, KB Ballentine’s third collection What Comes of Waiting was published in 2013. Published in many print and online journals, KB has two collections of poetry, Fragments of Light (2009) and Gathering Stones (2008), published by Celtic Cat Publishing. Her work also appears in Southern Poetry Anthology, Volume VI: Tennessee (2013) and Southern Light: Twelve Contemporary Southern Poets (2011).
Ballentine received her MFA in Poetry from Lesley University, Cambridge, MA. She currently teaches high school theatre and creative writing and adjuncts for two local colleges.
Learn more about KB Ballentine at www.kbballentine.com.