After I find the sand dollar on the beach, my mother cracks it open to show me the little doves inside, but they aren’t there. Instead, it’s full of blood, & the faint outline of a finger. This isn’t a sand dollar, she says. It’s my lost sister. She does not say more. I take what remains of the shell & toss it into the Gulf.
Justin Carter’s first book, Brazos, is forthcoming from Belle Point Press in 2024. His poems have appeared in The Adroit Journal, Bat City Review, DIAGRAM, and other spaces. Originally from the Texas Gulf Coast, Justin currently lives in Iowa and works as a sports writer and editor.