Friday, November 15, 2013

15 November 2013


When a man takes a woman from behind, she cannot see him,
even though, in this instance, she is prey. Her field of vision
is designed to capture sudden movement, not the lumbering

of his body at her back. She tracks the objects closest to her face:
the burlap grasses, the splayed legs of the railroad trestle.
If she looks at them with one eye and then the other, they shudder.


We call the division between the two parts
desire. They are near enough to spark.

Above the line, the woman is knocked out
like daylight beneath a door. Below it,

the men are agitated, aroused, estranged.
The dusk-loose gnats blood-speckle and splash.


Black and white distances the viewer.

A broken crow drops from the jaw of some animal into the snow.
If we were to encounter it, with our chins tucked to our chests to block the blizzard,
we might think of it as shadow, but, in truth, the body is red.

There are two ways to define this: restoration and desecration.
It comes down to a question of actuality and intent.

When you enter my room, it is dark. What you can see
are broad patterns, the bars the blinds discard onto the linen.

If this were in color, would you know whether or not to be afraid?


There's no use in saying what if
it were warmer

and her skin doused with the sweat
of orchids:

the hammered back of an Ophrys,

cocked by the wind,

Should it have happened then
(her body

written over in blossom),
the ripened bees

would have been faced with pollen —
honeyed, unhinged.

Finishing Moves

We begin by leaning, learning the feel of the other body
before extending it into its longest possible line

but finishing is different from this partnering:
it is more like a property let go, where a female crawls

to birth a litter, the ground teeming with weeds, choked.

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