Floating, ghost horse wakes in a field
Exactly like his own, just that he can’t touch
The soft weeds crawling up the fence.
At first, he shivers into invisibility.
His long colt legs, long hair brushed back with birch
Hold no eyes in the curtain of trees.
Soon he gets the hang of this thing,
Wind faster on skin than before,
So fast he can pass through his mother
Out the other side, in the space between two stilted beats.
Always shudders as he exits the heart.
Days, years, rainfalls pass,
Collecting his thoughts into beads and lines,
He strings them up to catch light.
Begins to see himself in concentric layers,
Peels back the translucent patterned skin
Till he dreams all the marrow he ever was.
Descended from others who swallowed sun,
Ran the earth down to dust,
Inhabited islands wild with birds
They chased into jewels and turned to combs.
He wakes from these dreams still rambling,
Trusts new legs will grant him escape,
Allow him to inhabit a promised forever,
Some inherited version of the first start
Shannon Cuthbert is a writer and artist living in Brooklyn. Her poems have appeared in Plum Tree Tavern, Bangor Literary Review, and The Oddville Press, among others. Her work is forthcoming in New Feathers Anthology, Hamilton Stone Review, Déraciné Magazine, and Ink Sweat and Tears, among others.