Saturday, March 15, 2014

Hungry Kisses in Darkness

I think of Cleopatra by her window at night, Egypt starving and the world's most powerful men bearing down on her with armies. A little rain falls while we walk. And later in the barn, bumping hay bales and shovels and stumbling through uncoiling hoses, I hear mice leap from rafter to rafter, burrowing back into piney walls. A sigh that precedes the soft cries muffled by hungry kisses.

In darkness - jacket thrown on banks of snow - one works calmly, knowing the limits now of effort and control. Study consequence if you want to find God. How strange to have grown so content with thought, the twining narrative with its secrets and semantics. When she bent over me I traced the curve of her shoulder dappled with sunlight and dreams of crocuses rushing the sun.

Beneath the paint, wallpaper reminiscent of the mid-1960's, and we stopped to give attention to it, as if voices from decades earlier were asking for forgiveness. I rise in darkness, fumble for clothes, mumbling the same prayer that ushered me to sleep. You, always you. And Her, too.

Be aware of what props facilitate creativity. Write about writing. Praise is a form of consequence, and also resistance - yours and someone else's - so let it pass the way sunlight passes, and certain relationships. The page, properly understood, is a symbol of what is - approach thy wordiness accordingly.

Or not. For three days I struggled to work the word "saffron" into my writing and it wouldn't come so I wrote "Cleopatra" instead. Old photographs of older dogs discovered while cleaning the basement give rise to tears and my daughter says later "but it wasn't even your dog" and I say - only learning it as I do - "none of them are but still." You prism, you rain drop, you kiss where I am softest.


  1. I keep reading your last sentence.

    That is It.

  2. Thank you so much Cheryl . . . there's been a nice space lately where the words are mostly given, such a sweet grace . . .