sometimes, strangeness is a place I lean toward
Outside Johannesburg, Monica is bending down to pet the fur of an infant lion,
marveling at the way the cub seems oblivious, undisturbed by her human presence.
Across the world, on the cobblestones of a highland city in the epicenter of Mexico,
Andrea is retrieving lessons from a salsa class, squaring her toes between cracks,
humming a few bars to keep time. Of course, I’m imagining that part, the singing,
just as I’m placing my own hands at the belly of a tiny beast in a country I’ve never
once visited. Sometimes, strangeness is a place I lean toward, an alien continent
I travel to when my own geography rubs its too-familiar elbows at my ribs. I like
how the distance ripens my enthusiasm, opens my mouth to the rim of some red
margarita Andrea must be dancing toward, crystals of salt inches from my tongue.