Lee Sharkey

We both drink the water; neither can describe its taste

From a deep well, pumped through polyvinyl and copper pipe, then out a faucet
Disrobing, you draw a bath, soap every round and crevice, lean back, cleared of forethought
From an earthwork catchment a half day’s walk from the aqal. Fill two bladders stitched of skins, pack
them on the camel
After sex, the ritual cleansing—the dipper, the shallow bowl. Left hand wets a cloth and runs it over the
rip in the stitched vagina
Gift of light, finger of wind and palm of gravity. In the song about water you are singing a song about
The last infrastructure frontier for private investors
In the convoy escaping the city fifteen women came into labor at once. There was no water for the
midwife to wash her hands. There was no water to wet the women’s lips. What can assuage the terrible
thirst of the women? They left the ground beneath the galool tree covered with membrane and placenta
Discontinuities are likely. We will be well positioned to profit even more significantly when they occur
In the camp, there was no water to wash our clothes. The bandits entered. The shame of semen is ever in
my nostrils
Water carried the house downstream. The flood was steel brown and thunderous. No one could stay
away. It was like seeing blood coursing through the arteries of God
Sliding down the throat, cooling the tube of the esophagus. A small wave arriving in the stomach’s pool

Lee Sharkey
“We both drink the water; neither can describe its taste” is from A Darker, Sweeter String (Off the Grid Press, 2008).