2025, I AM HELEN

Gail Ingram

a refugee, 15
my face glued to the shuttle window
I see the arc of earth orbiting
beneath me, a blue belly. Part of me
pulls away, but the further it gets
the closer it feels. The globe,
my home. Maybe
her mouth open in wonder, Alice felt like this,
her neck stretched like a spaghetti string
her head above the clouds
so she couldn’t see her toes.
They were still there
like Aotearoa is, poking through
its ocean of blue.

When I shut my eyes, I see
the sperm whales blowing
white spume.