by Wilda Morris
You swam in the cup of water our cousin Donn
said a person could drown in. You were the liquid
spotting grandmother’s pillow, Uncle Norman’s towel
that would not dry, the soundless wet circle
always on the dining room table.
You schooled me in fear of swimming holes, lakes
rivers, waves. When Mother took me to the city pool,
you dived from Donn’s cup, tried to pull me under.
Relinquish your power over me, Junior. I can no longer
live in the shadow of your swollen young body.
~ previously published in Encore: Prize Poems 2011