When Hannibal says “Memory, Agent Starling,
is what I have instead of a view,” I know
what he isn’t thinking: a rainy night
in childhood, my first taste of fermented fish
and rice sautéed in oil and scallions.
Other indelibles: durian, dear jungle
cousin to the favored jackfruit
(a scientist in Thailand has found
a way to breed its singular scent from
flesh). I would not need to rinse
my hands in water poured into the half-shell,
the same way now there are square apples
that fit more easily into brown
packing boxes. I like a whiff
of succulence from what my hands
have touched, like knowing
about the scar on that shoulder;
can see the graphite surface of a lake
blurring soft and hard together—
the healed bruise and its rind
like new fruit you could feel and name.
Stroke of skin, sutured by rock-strewn water.