Cheryl Latif

circular breathing

there are only moments now

when illness is forgotten,

when the woman you once were

returns to your skin

and a trick of imagination

sees you sprint to the corner

in time for the light,

hike the trail up Cowles mountain.


she is the phantom

this is your grief

this siren in the shadows

teasing dreams of muscles

warm and limber,

stretching the truth of expectation;

twisted recompense

late spring.


only she knows

how rest comes

when sleep will not

how you follow your breath,

its circular motion

draw stillness

from the hummingbird’s flight


how you stumble toward grace

offer prayers    give thanks

wait    for moments rich

with forgetting


--Cheryl Latif