‘The boy from the sea’ in Cea’s ‘Baleen’

Cea’s chapbook Baleen: “we came / too early again this year as usual” (I), or maybe the sun “doesn’t come / around here any more” (II), there is only “the boy from the sea” who, in imagination, is “ice / seafoam / aquamarine / ash / cream” (III). And “there’s no one awake on the moon tonight”, and we know, because “he pulls it down so I can see” (VIII).

All ice these days is melting, and to be about ice is to be about melting, and to melt is to observe oneself unmade. Whether by fever or by another means. The boy who visits you, watches you, even if it’s pieces of yourself watching yourself.

All water is memory, because it was once vapor, once ice, again vapor, or could be ice. It depends how we form again, after the illness, after the encounter.

Published by Ursus Americanus Press, 2022. Illustrations — including the ribcage shown here — by Vicente Sampaio.

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