Part I. Coral / Part II. The Corral

By Ryan Nakano

Part I. Coral

Ahh, the coral
beauty sees the boy &
the boy breathes
thru jagged little gills diver boy dives deep into his back pocket
to pull out a piece of porcelain Made in
his memory begins before he was born
back when grandmother was a mermaid and
the reef he remembers belonged to the gill-less
force of a wave
the tide of war once littered the beach & the boy
combs the shore for shells
combs the shore for something to remember the kingdom with &
the coral has been cut vertically
the coral has been shattered into a million tiny pieces
small enough to be swallowed up through one’s gills &
the boy chokes
spits up
paints the sea on glass with mixed media
and spits out a quarter
Okinawan he adds
and then subtracts accordingly from
the coral

Part II. The Corral

Ahh, the corral
duties seize the boy &
the boy’s things
thru jagged brittle hills, desert boy deserts sleep through train gossip
pulls out a piece of paper stained in
his memory begins just before the war
back when mother was a maid and
the brief, he remembers, longing to
force of a wave
the ride wore on, splintered the streets & the boy
combs the floor for
combs the floor for something to remember his freedom with &
the corral has been shut purposefully
the corral has been gathered into thousands of tiny pieces
small enough to be hollowed out through one’s til’s &
the boy chokes
pent up
pains to see grass in acedia
and tips out a porter
my luggage, he adds
and they subtract accordingly from
the corral



About the Author
Ryan Nakano is an API poet,writer, and aspiring children’s book author. He is the co-curator of the White Noise Project Reading Series in Portland, OR. His writing can be found in his abandoned news reporter notebooks.