It started with a river, the way cities do, a glitter in the grass hardly more than a cabbage-white wing, a heart flick faint as stars and as far away. Flesh of my Flesh, the lullaby goes. It started with birds, a hatch of sparrows, the way all small birds are sparrows, in the backyard honeysuckle. Bone of my bone. Let the birds and rivers name themselves. The fairy-wren teaches her offspring the song she’ll know them by, stitches each note to the next, threading it out between them.
I call you grandson, and you look
and in that look, you become my grandson.
Like this, like light returning from one mirror
to another, we create each other.