“Gaia”, by Roisin Ní Neachtain


If, all of a sudden, water speaks to me
And earth too
I would not be hallucinating from the mouth of a shell

At night, I would stand feet deep in you 
My knees trembling into a current 
My hands stained in sand 
At one point, I would lock eyes with you
Before you poured yourself over me 
The chill of closeness misting my tongue 

I would be welcome into your brightness 
Strung on sun, salt in bas-relief 
Reeking of sea grass, mosses
My head in your chest
Breathing all the reasons
I could never learn your rust and flame-guttered trill 

By day your requiem would bless the ash of trees and animals 
Smoke-silvered spirits of your fingers 
Plucking out my eyes, ears, tongue 
Shredding my skin 
To plant them in a gristed torrent of waste 

Roisin Ní Neachtain is a writer, translator and artist based in Co. Kildare, Ireland. Her work had been published both online and in print, most notably in Poethead and iamb (wave 6). Her art features in international private collections and she is currently working on her first collection.

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