from Love's Dance.
It was bewitching, your open hand
Motionless, mute, but resolute,
Commanding. Of course I followed, past
Lights first dim, then sordid--bright
As a marquee of the underworld.
Your animal heat. Your heart in full gallop.
I gripped you with my heels, fingers
Knotted into your hair. I saw my blue coat
Transformed into a dune-colored cape.
Day and night. That urge and charge. Then
I got down on all fours, accepted the bit.
I, for whom solitude was as vast as the prairie!
Loving you shed light on the catastrophes of history.
Still, certain questions continue to saddle me.
Music falls measure by measure
To the floor, but desire is a striptease
Performed in reverse. The heart's ore
Buried miles deep, and for what?
I shrink even from myself. I wish
I could get out from under the sky,
Which handles me with an infuriating
familiarity. But that day--your hand--
What happened deep in the mountain of me.
And then the mine in collapse. The shaft
Choked with smoke. Voice burying voice.
An absence of air, preponderance of pitch.
I don't want to know, or understand, or be restored
To reason. In the wake of that treason, I am still
Domitable, a claim in wait. I am still
Possessed of my depths. I am still willing.
I am on my way, on my way to you,
Striding the earth, it seems, the tundra
Between us, though I am nearing you now,
Nearing the tropics of your chest, that island
Around which the water roils and swells.
I am closer now than before, though time
Gapes wide like a cavern, a jittery fault I'm
Afraid to cross. I want you seismographically.
I fight with me, with my urge to heave myself
Like a pitched ball at the distant wall
Of you. And like a dog, I am yanked back.
By time, is it, in some jealous, sadistic fit?
Me, I'm moth-minded, livid in my need
For shock, for heat, for the piercing electric
Screech of you. I was so angry once, a bay
Of hostility. What if I stop now, and let myself be
Lapped against like a barrier of rocks? Not
The sharp edged gnarled ones that wink
Out beyond the borders of safety, but
The gentle ones that seem to sleep here
Chastely in a little heap.