“There was an old woman I wished up. / She was the wife / of an old pond. / You could watch her swim in her husband…”
–The Wishing Bone Cycle
She takes palms of water to her lips,
drinks, and licks the algae off her fingers.
Fish nibble at her toes. She submerges slowly
and holds her breath under the surface.
Seaweed rubs her legs. Her hair dances
around her like a mane of smoke as she glides
in his silky coolness. Her sweat dissipates
into him; her nipples harden. Her floating
body causes surface ripples. She loves these still
days when they can share the quiet. She opens
her eyes underwater so she can see him, so
he can seep into her.
About the writer:
Ali Salzmann graduated with an MFA in Creative Writing from Texas State University, where she currently works as a Lecturer. She is also an Adjunct Assistant Professor at Austin Community College.
Image: “Twilight” by Nikolai Vryasov. Pastel on cardboard. 62 x 47 cm. No completion date specified. By permission. Russian realist and landscape painter Nikolai Vryasov was born in April 28, 1987, in a small village called Idrinskoye that lies to the south of Krasnoyarsk. In 2012, he graduated from Surikov’s Art School of Krasnoyarsk and continued his formation in Ilya Glazunov’s Russian Academy of Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture. The majority of his works are in the Academy fund. Nikolai Vryasov is the O:JA&L Featured Artist for July 2019.