If your body is a map,

Then I am its cartographer.

I want to explore the wilderness of your hair,

Slide down every curl like it’s a waterfall,

Zip-line across each strand of your Costa Rican rainforest until I find dark roots bleached by the sun.

I want to rappel down




Where I know I’ll find the base of your happiness, there

In your heart.

We can dance to its rhythm together like a waltz,

Spinning circles around the ballroom of your rib cage

Or better yet,

Let’s dance to your heart’s rhythm like a tribal song,

Unleashing primal urges with each beat of that ancient organ.

Let me discover new worlds in your eyes.

Would the clouds in your irises part and reveal to me a virgin soul


And untouched by human heartache or betrayal.

I would wander for 40 days or 40 years across the desert of your stomach

Relishing in every dip and dive of your body’s dunes,

Feeling its heat reflecting into me.

I want to acquaint myself with the slope of your shoulders,

I want to survey the depths of your spine as it plunges into the valley of your lower back,

I want to climb to the summit of your chest and gaze upon the vast beauty that is your planet.

And if your body is a map,

Then I must be Magellan.

I will circumnavigate your skin until my wanderlust is satiated,

I will read the lines of your laugh like a lighthouse

Like a beacon of light directing me out of the darkness

And safely


Familiar terrain.

Liz Coralli is a spoken-word poet and tour guide in Charleston. She’s an active member of The Unspoken Word poetry series in downtown Charleston.

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