i saw how you sprung up,
soles of your dirtied feet first,
out from the ground and back on top of it.
i saw you that day,
when the earth opened up for you
like a mother breaking open for her
first-born, no, her second,
it’s like the ground awaited that violent
thrashing before the spectacle,
your body covered in detritus,
the earth’s amniotic fluid,
bare skin uncovered and touched
by the sun all over.
i almost thought about giving God a chance.
the first time i saw your dirtied face
it was a young Spring morning,
long before the sky broke open for
Night, before the beasts dug out of
caves and cavities to feed on what was left,
before i tasted blood on my cracked lips,
peeling from the Winter’s cruelty after the
i knew God must not exist;
too tender and gentle was your body
against the sullied world, you were birthed
in it but you are not from here, and so you
took me back down, falling free down the
earthen cervix, back to your home of warmth
and dirt and hushed tones, and humming,
i was swaddled in some hum long gone, i knew
that if ever there was a hymn truly holy it was this,
and so you held me, i felt your fingernails brush against
my back, fingertips drawing circles, your knees
between my thighs as the earth filled in the space between us,
and i heard you mutter something ancient and sacred,
and i heard it mix with the hum, felt it swallow me whole,
my body slick with erratic vibrations, my body slick with dirt,
this primaveral reentering into the primal, oceanic womb.
Marcelo studies Art Theory and Practice, minoring in philosophy. He loves to work with memory and the act of remembering. There’s nothing in the world quite as satisfying as a truly ripe watermelon.