Words by Julia DaSilva

Photo by Victoria Murray

The night I ate bannock for the first time,
Strawberry juice meant
To wash it down instead ruptured
Pictures of imagined ancestors
Like blood bursting the rivets
From the sides of
Sailing ships

You would have said, the paths of our ships
Have by greater ships been erased
That our history was lost with the world
The colonial maps replaced,
That a rupture should open
For the western coast of Iberia.

And yes, ruptures
Pried open with radical love
Can reveal a lot
(perhaps even a rebel back home,
a bomb in a building of which
we do not speak—
an ignoble death
not like that of those who took
more than a building
crushed more than bricks
on the other side of the sea)

But still the ships sailed, while here
The night I ate bannock for the first
A series of moons sailed
Over a poisoned pond—

Hold it, you say, our ships did not poison,
They were drowned by bigger ones

Maybe this is true,
But here, the moons sail over a stage
That is not for me or for you;

It’s for the girl reading her poem
While we share bannock in her home,
And slowly the rupture comes, tearing
Conqueror’s rivalries to shreds,

And I wish I could know about the uncle
Dead in the rubble
of hope to build anew—

But that ship,
Like the others,
Has sailed.