Let’s say we’re seahorses. Let’s say our forgotten
birthday candles have melted
into coral. Let’s say the coral is forgotten too. Let’s say the
water is repetition. It
is high tide. We have washed ashore. The children scoop us up
with plastic shovels.
They drop us into half-filled buckets of sandy water hoping
to revive us. Their
mothers convince them to throw us back.
Our bodies turn to foam.
We are already dead.
Let’s say we’re notorious bank robbers planning our heist
from our hideout.
Let’s say our masks are big yellow happy faces. Let’s say
we are bad men.
Our mothers have written us letters trying to convince us
to turn ourselves in.
We rip them up and smile. We were always disobedient children.
Let’s say we’re cops who have been tipped off, about to
raid the hideout.
Let’s say our guns are loaded, and our laughs are loud.
Let’s say we’re liars and none of this happened.
Let’s say we were seahorses.
Let’s say our birthdays were never celebrated.
Let’s say we’ve crossed out those times in our lives.
Let’s say we’re convenient rough drafts.
(Originally published here)