Liza Katz Duncan: Iceberg

Of all the almosts, you were
the most of all.

We thought you were given, though
you were never meant to materialize.

As one crack in the ice expands,
creating hundreds of tiny

icebergs—calving, they call it—

yours was a simple drift, a breaking

I imagine you floating out to sea,
then emerging unrecognizable:

a pixelated photo of yourself,
or poorly-drawn stick figure.

Your body, a broken thing:

Your second birthday, coughing up

into your pretty cake. At six, filling
with fluid, day-glo veins pouring

poison into a swollen heart.
Little iceberg. Little

almost. I can see it now:
the cracks, scraps of your

floating world resurfacing.
Yes, it was better this way.