Brackish water, cola-foaming at the greenish shore pebbled with shadows,
leaves dry as tobacco, their delicate skeletons fading, transparent.
She pours the water, the black water into a cloudy jug
carries the water, its brackish cola foams, ascends the grey boards
littered with words, pages that spill old-time jazz men
their cheeks ballooning with red air to make blue sounds
that carry up the stairs where she places the jug – white pages
in a velvet book with mossy bindings, ivy-berried punctuation marks
lying next to a white shroud where a trench has been dug
and in its muddy puddle depths a mirror lies broken
a jagged line like lightning tears his faces, zags his skin
as she ladles the water, the brackish water into fluted glasses
and they drink, drink to the day that rises in a cloud
filling the room for them to travel through, filling the room,
their guidebooks already half-written, filled with maps
painted in watery inks.