By Saudamini Siegrist

If I come near enough to you to whisper,

I will forget all about the secret.

There’s no secret—only an excuse to admire

your ear up close, to place, by accident,


my mouth on your ear. I will appear

to whisper, it will look like a secret.

Don’t say a word, there’s nothing there

but my breath, even my breath is silent


inside your seashell ear. Can you hear

the ocean breaking? Inside your heart

the ocean is breaking—waves tower over

us, drowning me and my kisses. The secret,


if you want to know—listen—

I have fallen in love with the ocean.



Saudamini Siegrist was born in Montana and grew up in the West and Midwest. She earned a doctorate in English literature at NYU and a master’s in poetry at Columbia, and has taught at St. John’s University and at Fordham University. Her work has appeared in Salamander, Free State Review, Studio One, The Worcester Review, Zone 3 and Al-Raida Journal and received a nomination for the Pushcart Prize. She currently lives in New York City.

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