I have driven for miles with bottles
left on my roof—

for miles folks pointing
out warnings

I thought welcomes.
I have waved back.

The sound
of broken glass

follows me around
like a stray.

Good boy.

And the whales
washing themselves

nothing can save—

all day blankets wet
their skin like we’re taught

to put fires out.

And the volunteers pushing them
back out at high tide

sleep well, exhausted, even
proud—before forty more,

the same, days later pilot
themselves ashore again,

blowholes opening
and closing like fists.

And the sound.

And the fires out West
started by someone

lighting love letters
she didn’t want—
turns out to be a lie.

Blue blue windows
behind the stars.

And what if they had
been people instead

of whales, my mother wonders,
Would that many
gather to save us?

Just enough
light to read.