Dressed in darkness, I tumble into dawn
To run salt-scented, empty asphalt
Space my neighbors have abandoned
Since streetlamps, transfigured
Hatched airborne jellies, now
Untethered, slowly drifting past
An ocean’s liberated dream
Close to these shy miracles, I
Regret my awkward novice stride
And that I slept while they were born
Now icy puddles splash bare feet
Knees ache carrying my weight
Skin sweats, chaps, and chafes –
But above me, floating free,
Those silent creatures light my way.
– Carrie Cuinn
Ephyra was a Roman goddess, a barefoot daughter of the sea; it is also name of the last stage in the life cycle of a juvenile jellyfish, just before they swim free. I originally shared a far different version of this poem on my Patreon (if you become a patron, you’ll immediately get access to as many as 14 patron-only posts, including that early draft). I like were it ended up, more than I expected to.
Given how hard this week has been on so many people, I wanted to share something a little lovely, a little hopeful, a little magical. I hope you enjoy it.