By Erin Malone

Down from the ladder of sleep

my son comes, taller than the night before


and I a fraction smaller,

allowed a one-armed hug. Next door


an earthmover, god of this

neighborhood, is chewing up the scenery,


its vibration in the cages

of my eyes—yet the animals aren’t rattled.


The knots of his knees disguised

in new muscle, my son comes down from his loft


in solid form and says

Do you know trees are 90% air?


As if I haven’t spent years standing here

holding my breath.