Wednesday, July 13, 2011

of anne sexton—and my lover (periwinkle & lavender)

of anne sexton—and my lover (periwinkle & lavender)

may i kiss the back
of your knee
trailing up up
along the inside
of your thigh

like an anne sexton poem?

may i take your foot
in my hand
kissing the softest part

though you complain
that your legs
are not long and brown
(sorry, anne, sorry)

hamlet tells ophelia
that’s a fair thought
to lie between maid’s legs

and i suppose
that’s true

though “fair” can mean
many things
like “delicate,” “amber,” and “perfect”

and i believe he was not talking
about “thought”
it was “to lie,”
it was “between,”
it was “legs”

and you sent me her poem
in your handwriting
on a small white card

            sprung from a woman’s eye
            bloomed from your fingernail

her words
in your hand
have carved themselves
inside my chest

scars sprouting like roots
and speaking like Braille

to a dying woman
searching for her child
gone blind from exhaustion

crawling on her hands and knees
in her withering hysteria—

yes—they will carry me in
on a wooden bench

then everything—everything
will blossom across your cheeks
like a bouquet of tears

because no one will speak
no one will speak

so every hand
can hear
the words

like periwinkle & lavender

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