Startling, this body-bump of asterisks finding its way.

My fingers tapping & unclenching.

Finding something beautiful, like a marble or a map of hours.

Sand draining its throat down a glass funnel.

God breathing in my ear, stirring its bronze hairs.

I had found the unlocked fence.

I was carried across the backs of beaded prayers.

Twined hands & patterned feet.

The way you said I might jump.

The way my feet found the toppled redwood.

Its swollen heart & my vibrato face.

The way a river took me in its arms, passed me from stone to stone.

How I tried to love the slick green moss.

The pine wheel that turned & trampled me.

The way you found me there.

You could have been anyone.

The way you took my elbow with your river-hands.

The way you brushed among my naked body.

The way I never said no.

How easily the forest stepped over itself, a twiggy ballerina w/ scabbed knees & halo of fur.

How I lifted my skin from its webs.

The crimped legs of feasting insects. The way

I drew God with shaking fingers, all crooked lines & hemispheres.

How the mild day shone.

How easily I laid myself down among the shaggy river stones.

How they called my name, how they bit my face w/ love.

Emily Vizzo is a San Diego writer, editor, and educator. She serves as Assistant Managing Editor at Drunken Boat journal, and volunteers with VIDA, Poetry International, and Hunger Mountain. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in FIELD, The Journal, The Normal School, North American Review, and Western Humanities Review, among others. Her essay “A Personal History of Dirt” was noted in Best American Essays 2013. A San Diego Area Writing Project fellow and 2013 Vermont Studio Center resident, Emily teaches yoga at the University of San Diego. She completed her MFA in Writing at the Vermont College of Fine Arts.