Nomi Stone

December 16, 2016 Stone Nomi



Nesting, the turtle seems to be crying even though she is simply
secreting her salt. Her dozens bud limbs inside amniotic pillows as she leaves every
in a cup of sand the size of her body, shaped like a tilting teardrop — and both cryings
are mentioned by scientists. My niece Eve is startle-eyed when you feed
avocado and when you feed her sweet potato. She lives mouth first: she would eat
the sidewalk and piano, the symmetrical petals of the Bradford pear, as if she could learn
parts of the world are made and how, and yesterday she put her mouth on the image of
her own face in the mirror. Larkin says what will survive of us is love, but the scientists
that the end of the decay-chain is lead and uranium and after that, plastics. Just now
the zooplankton are swallowing micro pearls of plastic and the sea is aflame with waste
in the moon’s light. Here is the darkening hour and here, the shore, as she droplets
her eggs, bright as ping pong balls, into the sand.
She can’t
find the spot. The beach is saltined with lights, neoned with spectacular
globes of light, a dozen moons instead of the one
Still, she lets them go and one month later, tiny turtles hatch. They seem groggy,
carrying their houses of bone and cartilage to the ocean, scrambling toward the horizon
the earth’s magnetic field. Less than one percent of the hatchlings make it past
the seagulls and crabs, so Noah spent a summer dashing them to the water. But my
is not about the moment when a bird dove and bore
into the underflesh and into Noah’s memory. My poem is about how we are gathered
around Eve
in the kitchen as she eats a fruit she has never tried before and each newness
in the world stops the world’s ending in its tracks.

Nomi Stone is the author of the poetry collection Stranger’s Notebook (TriQuarterly, 2008). Her poems have been published or are forthcoming in Poetry Northwest, Memorious, The Painted Bride Quarterly, cellpoems, The Bloomsbury Anthology of Contemporary Jewish Poetry, The Margins at The Asian American Writer’s Workshop, at The Poetry Foundation, and elsewhere. She is currently researching and writing Kill Class, a collection of poetry based on her ethnographic fieldwork on combat simulations in mock Middle Eastern villages erected by the US military across America.