Issue 25 | Summer 2020

Xyliphius Sofiae

I, a human being with eyes that swim
in aqueous humor, hold a hand out

in absolute darkness and cannot see it.
You splash a few feet, fin filaments lolling.

Imagine the gall not to need light at all,
as if you, blindcat, were not breaking

the surface of a subterranean lake,
but floating in outer space. With those

spineless dorsal fins, you push against
water so half-heartedly, free from the tyranny

of a light cycle, laze around in all that ink.
Imagine the mind that could withstand

total darkness, eyelids sewn shut over retinae,
blood pulsing under translucent skin.

Filed under: Poetry

Soleil Davíd is an immigrant whose work has appeared in Arkansas International, MARY,
Sinking City,
and the Margins, among others. She received a BA from UC Berkeley and an MFA from Indiana University, where she served as Poetry Editor of Indiana Review. Davíd has received support from PEN America, VONA and Bread Loaf Translators Conference.