Looking for My Brother

by Joanna Chen

I still have your name. It is a word
I keep for special occasions. I take it
out sometimes when it gets too heavy
inside my little sister body. It is a fossil,
a foreign body inside my own. It clings to
my vital organs: my liver, my spleen, my

heart. I bring it up, I try the word that is
your name in my mouth. I am unused

to these precise syllables, their clipped sounds
exiting my body. I clear my throat, breathe

in, hold it tight inside the way I was taught
in yoga and then release into
a shout, but my voice is drowned
by other shouts, like water rushing
unchecked into the sea, and then
your voice, rising above it, calling my name.


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