One summer in Pensacola,
I held an orange this way,
flesh hiding beneath
the texture of the rind,
then slipped my thumbs
into its core & folded it
open, like a book.

When I held out the halves,
the juice seemed to trace
the veins in my arms
as it dripped down to my elbows
& darkened spots of sand.
We were sitting on the beach then,
the sun, spheres of light within each piece.
I remember thinking, in Tagalog,
the word matamis is sweet in English,
though I did not say it for fear
of mispronouncing the language.

Instead, I finished the fruit & offered
nothing except my silence, & my father,
who pried apart another piece, breaking
the globe in two, offered me half.
Meaning everything.