take me outside to the place we both knew so well

when i’d hold your hand while walking barefoot 

even though the soil was littered with bindis

but i preferred the earth to know who i was 

from the taste of my blood and the way it filled with grains of sand

than to have to speak my name in a language it could never understand 

with a voice i was still discovering 


take me to the mountain we would go to sit 

and watch the stars fall past the edge of the earth 

like they were always destined to do

let me think of the people i used to know when i was small 

and remember the things i forgot about them

the pieces of gold that captured my heart into loving them 

and the ways they hurt me that saw me quickly let them go


take me to the ocean where my heart once drowned

as people in barely-there swimsuits watched me stand 

in waves that broke on the shoreline

as my bones shattered beneath the forceful hands of the sun 

and all its reasons for keeping the world alive in a chorus of separate songs

let me dance in the sand one more time 

while you take photographs of the footprints i leave behind

so i can remember their rhythm long after i’ve left them


take me to the tree outside the home where i grew up 

and i’ll carve my name into its bark 

beside the one i made at nine years old

i’ll climb its branches and stretch my arms out so 

i’m taller than the leaves 

and higher than the light that bleeds over them

i’ll feel the greatness of everything you’ve given me 

the power of all i am

and i’ll know this to be a journey of infinite steps 

that encase golden prayers in the face of a western wind

trusting i’ll be going home and knowing i’ll never be coming back