to make the sun shine brighter
by my relative dimness, to reflect
the light of a lover, to speak
in the tones a cattail speaks in,
to be the plain, but not the wind across it.
Sometimes, he says, you can be completely invisible.
He tells me to be a toothless
lion, to wait
in the paleness of night for a brassy star
to overpower me.
Joy is in the sacrifice,
he says. My father says. My father
who has never been pollen, carried
from one stamen
to another, who does not lie like a needle in a pile
the size of a haystack, or been strings plucked
until the sound waves grew cancerous,
who has never steamed away, singular
into something plural, into pocket-sized ghosts,
who has never been erased from photographs
or been a moon.
Tiffany St. John is an eager pursuer and peruser of Poetry, Psychology, and Philosophy. She lives with her husband and two cats in Columbus, Ohio. She has been published in Black Warrior Review and awaits publication in the upcoming anthology Poetry on Loss through Little Lantern Press.