Je Ne Parle Pas

I’m not your native tongue.
I speak halos and dreams;
my mouth drips hyssop and honey.

Syllables roll out like deluge
flood waters and fill your neat streets
and you,
you prefer the ocean.
It has definition.
You can find it on a map and say,
“It goes here. This is
how far it stretches.”

My flow makes no sense
to you. It’s unexpected.

But you speak it
sometimes. Your lips press
together and sound out the om,

the hum of coming together
to make a new world.

And when you’re tongue-
tied-breath-caught between the yes
and the no of learning a new language,
I feel your lungs expand.



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