Mother handed me circles. Carry these. Place them where everyone can see. Where you cannot forget. Draw yourself. Daughter, you’re more than a closed curve.
I carried them over mountains, swam with them in the sea. At night, I dreamt of salamander tails. Limbs regenerating. Awoke to find the circles missing. How could I return home? Daughter who lost everything?
For months I went unnamed, unclaimed. Rocked
to sleep by Sister Bina. Bottle-fed and I grew
uncharted hair spread from my temples to my neck,
black and thin like rice paper.
In a photo I have never seen she was holding me.
In every photograph since, given an American name.