Island Kingdoms

Did we come here today to watch
curtains fluttering in open windows?
Did we come to mourn
the ones in graves,
or the ones on their way to join them?

It turns out that “here” is a fragile idea:
A place that isn’t here
is a thing without a color,
but a here that has no place
is a color without a thing.

We are each enthroned
on an island of one;
we are specks on a map of dust.

But we didn’t come here to talk about islands—
or colors or dust,
nor even to talk about talking.
Our tears become oceans;
our words become lifeboats.
Refugees on each other’s shores,
we find no one to listen,
even though that’s the reason we came here today.