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Fall 2000, Volume 18.1



Sonnin Dahl WatersPhoto of Sonnin Dahl Waters.

Sonnin Dahl Waters completed her M.A. in Creative Writing at the University of New Mexico, where she has worked on the editorial staff of Blue Mesa Review and La Puerta. Recent poems have appeared in Conceptions Southwest and Mount Voices. She lives in the Manzano mountains of New Mexico with her husband and five dogs.



they say it is asthma
but it only happens when you dream
or when the moon is high
then you need the water's safety
to go back home
to breathe through gill slits
they say your eyes are overly sensitive
but only when you face toward the sky
or under the electric glow of night
when body rhythms know it should be black
but your pale eyes always burn
outside the filtered shade of water
they say it is ageóbodies change
that it is dry bones
weighted down by gravity
and creaking joints slowly
running out of fluid
but it is the pain of walking upright
faltering on two flat feet
balanced precariously on the earth



He knew Sister Patrick's blue habit
her red fingernails
the way she hugged his Martin guitar between her knees
her head bald in deference to God
it was on a fishing boat called Le Deluge
where temptation beckoned like a siren
salmon the size of their forearms, hers firm, his freckled
white caps of water and glaciers on the horizon
freedom trapped under ice
even glaciers erode with age
and when his cuff links were sent home
his cancered body cremated
the white room cleaned for the last time
Sister Patrick left behind her empty blue habit


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