St. Paul, MN USA
I am resting beside my clothes.
I am found wanting again.
It ends. It always ends;
I don’t need to see to visualize.
Then, leaving, once again, empty-handed;
accompanied only by echoes
of quickening sighs.
The night is a well.
The well isn’t deep enough;
each time I think I catch
a glimpse of you at the bottom,
I see you fade; replaced by stars
imbedded in a black banner, waving
somewhere far above my head.
What can withstand or contain
a force, combined and multiplied
times as many years as
it languished in vain; cowering
in a small corner; frightened by being
set apart, waiting
for someone to witness to its
formerly borne along great tracts
of a wasteland of thorns?
You, sweetest of souls, could stand
very close; yes, right next to it,
and never once
Where is this new land that it craves to burn,
where it tingles, intoxicates, and dances among scents
that are breathed through a mouth of flowers?
That star-encrusted banner of which I spoke
waving overhead as I looked into night’s well
could come down on us, without smothering,
or reducing by half, even a single flame.
My window’s been closed for several days.
The noise I hear’s not coming from outside.
It sounds like the tumult of fast-beating wings–
the bee’s visiting the remains of the hibiscus again;
or is it the drone of a lone evening zephyr
asking a dance of the dead leaves?
Here is my act of compromise.
When I can pick out your form, here,
through the veil of night,
then, and only then
shall I close my eyes.