eye on the ball
by Sienna Baskin

    from the bank where we sit, rain on our knees,
    its a chalked smudge,
    but I see it clear.
    Like a spotlight focused on me.
    Like an eye, coy.

    It winks out
    behind the partner dance of teams,
    bodies threading, near collision
    disappears into the tangle
    of whipping hair and flashing thighs
    that jostles and tightens

    and I can feel it in there
    the tiny ball - the eye of the ball,
    looking for a loophole out of this fight,
    and it shoots clear,
    full shining against the green wash,
    like a moon on quick rise,
    like a throw-away poem,
    like a negative cannonball,
    innocent of weight.

    At its peak
    everything breathes.
    The ball sees me
    and I look back.
    The dusk is trying to be night,
    the dew is trying to be water and
    the water to be rain, and
    I will it not to fall.

    To keep you by my side in profile,
    parallel, my twin and not my lover,

    I will to stop the falling
    that will send us laughing for cover
    to some dry lit place

    where I will have to face you,
    understand your belonging
    to me, and learn that dance

Copyright © 2021 by Red River Review. First Rights Reserved. All other rights revert to the authors.
No work may be reproduced or republished without the express written consent of the author.