Sarah Sarai: Three Poems

Wish Me Luck

I replaced phone to cradle,
knowing it was just
something to say,

that luck’s more than
preparation meeting opportunity
wooing a congressman
saving up for a sex change.

It’s not hard fact in collaboration
with ambiguity,
not briefs longing for
the strapless bra up in heaven.
It’s a result,

what Jesse Pinkman
told Hank Schrader.
Mr. White’s so damn lucky.

Which may not bear out
when the machine gun’s
fired its last, or may,
because fulfillment is in the
eye of the storm.

Could be luck’s the
River Jordan of fiction,
a passage, part of the daily miracle,
a Glad bag of coal
Superman will squeeze
into diamonds.

I saw him do it.


What an Arroyo Can Do

It is possible for an arroyo to hold water,
just as a gutter, one of its definitions, can.
But mine is high in the desert and dry as scorn.
The sun bakes long-suffering into that dirt.
That’s what an arroyo is, a gully of dirt
the color of old pottery and scrub,
like a god scattered a burden of
wild straw and told it to dig deep into
the color of acceptance. Make roots.
“Start a family.”

“This is home,” the wild straw said as it clung
to the land. Not at first.

But after so many cycles of skies talking
blue streaks to nights. Then
the scrub made friends. Fell in love.

I was drinking when I fell into an arroyo.
Scrub raked my hands like a rancher
if he thought I was after his daughter.
Unless he hoped for a daughter-in-law.
A piñon tree ordered the scrub to resist my pull.
“Stay grounded!”

You know – when we think stars are trembling?
It’s the constellations laughing.
I saw them. I was on my back.
The stones, which I haven’t even introduced,
snarled at dirt and scrub to ignore me.
No one argues with stones.


By Any

as if vertebrae slither in
and out of sensory cores,
her sideways glance is
an obligation you feel
in your skeletal skyscraper
I’ll call the longing
spine, as if yoga masters
named it for, oh, what is
that word dragging you
on a walled-in carpet of
eels and alloys feet-first
to a couch long and soft
and oh, so wide, a couch
so very wide.


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