Photograph by Maël Balland

because I couldn’t grow here, you said—
nestled in the same cubicle for twenty years,
sun shut behind corner office doors.
we could be okay with our 401ks
but we do not photosynthesize under these fluorescents

tilted headfirst into summer
I itch to run, to sail, to burn, to craft my wings
no longer to defy a tyrant, or prove I have a soul
(these words the evidence, and sweating hands)
but to reclaim the sky as inheritance
to hoard sunlight
weeping throat-thick behind the eyes
in fear of candle-blown tomorrows.

I wonder what kind of growing I will choose—
the weed pushing up through New York concrete
unrolled in defiance of dog piss-coated shoes
declaring home,
or the dandelion seed
adrift in eddied time,
making one.
either way,
the same flower is carried thousands of miles.

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Phoebe Low
Phoebe Low is a proud member of the Viable Paradise Class of 2019. She lives in Brooklyn with her hypothetical cats, and can be found on Twitter @p_lowren.