One hand reaches for its mate
in the stippled dark.
I try to make a fist of fingers,
seemingly glued wide open.
These numb mitts
are my hands now.

Front to back,
my faith molds to yours:
your dream, my clavicle.
Our silence isn’t talking because it doesn’t have to.
We’re as still as a thousand sleeping mice.

When the red one leaps on the bed,
I roll over to make room,
and the die is cast, cat crossing
the flannel-deep waters
of our storied Rubicon, this panther
nestled between us, with divine right.


Julia Wendell’s sixth collection of poems, The Art of Falling, was published by FutureCycle Press in 2022. Another collection, Daughter Days, will be published by Unsolicited Press in 2025. She is Founding Editor of Galileo Press, lives in Aiken, South Carolina, and is a three-day event rider.