© 2019 Helen: a literary magazine

This Hue Only Exists Here

by Brett Salsbury

The Robin egg fell to the concrete
but didn’t break. I held it. I eventually broke it but I was young, you see,
so let me use that excuse. All the eggs that have been. Humpty Dumpty.
Breakfast. The bird with a cat call: that chattering.
Every little miracle. A portion of this narrative hides
toward the back of the plate, underneath the avocado.
 
Giant Tortoises bury their eggs on the beach. You know this story:
you build a sandcastle. But even better is that moment on the sunset, where look
how big it is: the sun doesn’t seem as far away as it is.
It isn’t. The turtles hatch. Your memory fades into those primordial waves.
Most of the turtles won’t make it.
 
You could think of your own life in stages. Waves. Pre- and post-Robin egg.
It was blue. Poems hopefully last a little longer,
but it’s always back to how it is you feel:
when you met him. When you became a together.
When you learned you could italicize.
 
Delete your photos. The egg stands still.
You remain in its possession. The sun is even closer now.
None of this is yours. How very long
you’ve been here. It isn’t that long
and you don’t have much time left.
Previously published in The Poet’s Billow in 2016