An Aubade to Salt

Goodbye my sweet sting, 
the sea I hide behind

my eyes, the rivers of life
coursing within me.

Wave after ocean wave,
you have gone from seaside

holiday spray to nightmares
where the bitterness lashes

at the rigging and my lips
feel the kiss of the sea

long after a sweated sleep.
The deer seek you out,

their shadows moving
through forests for that one

rock to lick that will give
them life. I no longer have

a salt shaker on my table, 
and what the heart cannot

tolerate or the internal
organs absorb, becomes

a lover’s poison of pain.
I cannot kiss your crying

eyes so I will try not to
make you weep. Movies

where we sat with a bag
of salted popcorn are now

their stories rather than
their taste, and if I thirst

it is not because of what
I ate but because my body

is a freshwater lake, cool
and waiting to dissolve

beneath a blanket of clouds
the way stars dissolve 

when daylight comes 
and we part without tears.

Bruce Meyer

Bruce Meyer is the author of 70 books of short stories, flash fiction, poetry, and non-fiction. His stories have won or been shortlisted for numerous national and international prizes including this year's Lynn Fraser Fiction Prize from Freefall, the Fish Fiction Prize (IRE), the Bath Short Story Prize, the Carter V. Cooper Prize for Fiction, and a special Editor's commendation from the Edinburgh Flash Fiction Prize, His most recent collections of fiction are "Toast Soldiers" (Crowsnest Books), "Down in the Ground" (Guernica Editions) and the forthcoming collection of flash fiction, "Sweet Things" (Mosaic Press), and a collection of longer stories, "Magnetic Dogs" (Guernica). With Michael Mirolla, he co-edited the forthcoming anthology, "This Will Only Take a Minute" (Guernica) which is the first Canadian anthology of flash fiction. He lives in Barrie, Ontario, and is Professor of Communications at Georgian College.