The Only Hands I Want To Know

hold on, for dear
life, hold on,

holds on, tight
grip, white knuckles,
ripping my flimsy body
from the sea.

We are ballet together.
Strict, and flexible.
The tragedy of the sea
drips from my fingertips;
he twirls death out of me.

For years, I drifted on dead logs,
raging against a hateful water,
dipping my hands in to remember

the violent debris, floating barely
above surface.
He disagrees.

He only saw a body dance perfectly
ill-tempered, diving into
the boiling veins of the world.
His hands reached in,
not to pull me from death,
not to release me from dangerous
waves that swallowed me in
then spit me back out,
but to dance
a perfect dance
on dry desert land.