A fog of Saudades by Alyssa Martens

Poem title: A fog of Saudades Poet name: Alyssa Martens Poem: I can hardly feel the warmth, my skin forgets where it comes from. Up here on Sukkertoppen, the threat of an arriving atmospheric river seems to soften. The mist is thick, forces my mind to migrate. The fog drifts me back to childhood streets. I am amidst polluted air, strengthening the vibrancy of a blood orange sunset. I reach for comfort among São Paulo hearts, beating in rhythm under a sharp sun. In young sneakers, I wander concrete sidewalks past shouting market stands and impatient cars. Oh, the heat of it all. I wish I could soar all the way back and hold my breath underwater across a summer pool. As I plunge into water, I stop myself. All around, rain forms lakes out of valleys. Darkness crowds me. I hear the atmospheric river escape the sky, imagine all the waterfalls I used to swim in, how I tried to climb one once, to immerse in its force from above. I felt big back then, and never quite big enough. End of poem. Credits and bio: Copyright ©Alyssa Martens Forthcoming in publication elsewhere. Alyssa Martens (she/her) is a poet, curator, and writing facilitator living and working on the unceded and ancestral lands of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wœ7mesh (Squamish), and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations, colonially known as Vancouver, Canada. Originally from São Paulo, Brazil, her work navigates themes of migration, ecological grief, loss, and definitions of home. Her forthcoming debut poetry collection, “all the while, we melt,” mourns the loss of Arctic ecosystems from an eco-feminist worldview. She regularly facilitates poetry and non-fiction writing workshops with audiences of all ages, and has taught creative writing through ThriveYouth Development Canada, Megaphone Magazine, Arts & Health: Healthy Aging through the Arts, Sierra Club BC, the Bolton Academy of Spoken Arts, and the University of British Columbia.