Musings #27

THE READING

They belong to a scientist, not a poet

she said, noticing

my crooked fingers. In palm lines

and hollow, she reads

three children.

How a beguiled mind strains

to render true.

I have only one. And yet,

what of the boy long before,

cocoa-skinned, his hair gold-green,

who turned to me and when grown

did not know

what to call me.

The third – no more than

a blocked egg, ectopic, another soul

intent on calling me mother.

SHE SITS ACROSS FROM ME

Beyond and about her shoulders,

her hair lifts-falls,

like waves that bend the sea.

She wonders why

she plays with it.

I tell her a rabbit crouches

in the moon, the sky

a hutch for stars.

The urgency is gone now –

the clutch and tangle

I once thought love.

After the rip asunder,

a deluge. After the deluge,

calm in the spent.

THE LURE OF CLAY

According to Sufi legend, God coaxed spirit

into form when he set the clay to dancing.

I want you in your body –

my eyes want to look at you,

my hands want to touch.

But what if

– just what if –

the surprise at death is this –

these bodies have been

what separate us,

keep us apart,

and rid of them

we are closer together

than ever –

as close as one. Still

it is so hard to let go,

to comprehend another way –

death’s ravaging beauty.