Constellations were emblematic

Nicole Breit

Colours bore drug-like names: viridian, alizarin, quinacridone. Me, text to your texture. Tongues a canvas braille. I braved Horses a cappella, Pisces head-to-tail on hardwood that summer. Glinty squint, sloped smile: Good song, Nini. Our socked feet on the floor, a soft drunk beat. Could we have been closer? Were we even really there? Most men I knew then were safety—high risk. But you never hoped my lashes could save you. The past written, pen in our hands. How easy it was to climb inside each other’s dreams. Caught, then carried, by Sloan’s mid-song swell. Who am I? the wee man asked, marooned on planet earth—watercolour question, pressed into my hands. Three touchstones that prove we were real: wet coast trails, acrylic lizards on your car, my blood inhaled by the bear. I could never say it, what breathing around you did to me. Spiced soap, linseed oil, pine needles—our entire world, glittering amber. A gold-green tang. My hair salt damp. Your wide ocean arms.


Nicole Breit is an award-winning poet, essayist and online writing instructor who lives on British Columbia’s gorgeous Sunshine Coast. Her work has appeared in Brevity, Hippocampus, carte blanche, Event, The Archer and The Puritan. To learn more visit