Sarah Kirstine Lain

Bottom Dweller

Split at the mast, sunk.
A waterlogged wreck
on the abyssal plane.

But years later, I dove
to you, only to see:
what’s beneath is not dead.

This shipwreck is ridden
with chests. Your starboard,
repurposed into reef –

biosphere of woodfallen life,
soiree of lobsters
and decked out sea daisies

reaching for the next meal.
You are no skeleton.
Who’s to say what is buried.


Sarah Kirstine Lain is a graduate of Lesley University and assistant editor of poems2go. She lives in St. Petersburg, FL, where she teaches writing. She is currently working on a video project mixing poetry with electronic sound.

On why poetry matters, Sarah writes: “Two quotes come to mind when I think about why poetry matters to me. The first is by Peter Meinke: “Poetry is the emotional history of the world.” We have studies for technology, medicine, religion, law, etc. But poetry captures emotion and converses with that emotion, often between cultures and other art forms over a period of time. It’s a holistic approach to chasing the complexity of truth, a defiant act of creation and protest in a world too often destructive and silent about its own destruction. The second quote that comes to mind is by Cate Marvin, my former mentor: “Why do I care about poetry? ALL that I care about is poetry!” I’ve related to poetry since grade school, reading and writing poems before I ever knew how. Poetry, for me, is obsession. I can’t not poem.