From The First Water is the Body


The river is my sister—I am its daughter.

It is my hands when I drink from it,

my own eye when I am weeping,

and my desire when I ache like a yucca bell

in the night. The river says, Open your mouth to me,

and I will make you more.


Because even a river can be lonely,

            even a river can die of thirst.


I am both—the river and its vessel.

It maps me alluvium. A net of moon-colored fish.

I've flashed through it like copper wire. 

Bibliographical info

Excerpt from The First Water is the Body. Copyright © by Natalie Diaz. Reprinted by permission of the publisher.

Source: Postcolonial Love Poem (Graywolf Press, 2020)


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