It’s all day waking,
every step as a tick

of the clock until
your body falls back.

How long until you
approach the meaning

of lone. Have your
ears ever computed

the miles between
dream and dreaming,

between closer and
closed. You and I are

fiercely mundane in
our desire to arrive.

Are we more than
a status of beyond,

longer than the vowed
recurrence of each

heartbeat on loop,
wider than the new

year hovering inside
the wingspan of an

albatross. We are
cosmic promise, a thing

that refuses to be
measured, as not what

we take up, but what
takes up around us,

candid rays touching far
and full the godlight.





Mai Der Vang is the author of Afterland (Graywolf Press, 2017), winner of the 2016 Walt Whitman Award of the Academy of American Poets. She is an Assistant Professor of English in Creative Writing at Fresno State and teaches in the MFA Program.

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