Regeneration of Tom
by Sam Roxas-Chua for Tom Titus

The weight of one salamander
equals the weight of light
from this boy’s eyes.
The weight of a boy
standing in a field
is the weight of amity
measured from father to son,
mother to milk, milk to mouth,
mouth to finger, finger to feed—
his salamanders.

These are the tender years
belonging to mouse bones
and deep pockets mothers
don’t know about. The short
pant years of cut off jeans
and cut skin from thorn or critter bite.
Of found river coins,
spectacles, and magnifying glass—
this is the Language of Tom
calling us to mimic

the animality of green feast
and acorn speech.
He is friend of newt,
friend of pond trickle,
son of foothill and birch.
When he speaks,
branches from a tree
flex their muscles,
they stand like brothers
balancing the earth’s fat feet.

(c) 2014 Sam Roxas-Chua