in the deepest and most broken place,
are going, going.
Be careful of words,
even the miraculous ones.
For the miraculous ones we do our best,
sometimes they swarm like insects
and leave not a sting but a kiss.
They can be good as fingers.
They can be trusty as the rock
you stick your bottom on.
But they can be both daisies and bruises.
Yet I am in love with words.
They are doves falling out of the ceiling.
They are six holy oranges sitting in my lap.
They are the trees, the legs of summer,
and the sun, its passionate face.
Yet often they fail me.
I have so much I want to say,
so many stories, images, proverbs, etc.
But the words aren’t good enough,
the wrong ones kiss me.
Sometimes I fly like an eagle
but with the wings of a wren.
But I try to take care
and be gentle to them.
Words and eggs must be handled with care.
Once broken they are impossible
things to repair.
She is all there. She was melted carefully down for you and cast up from your childhood; cast up from your one hundred favorite aggies. She has always been there, my darling. She is, in fact, exquisite. Fireworks in the dull middle of February and as real as a cast-iron pot. Let’s face it, I have been momentary. A luxury. A bright red sloop in the harbor. My hair rising like smoke from the car window. Littleneck clams out of season. She is more than that. She is your have to have, has grown you your practical, your tropical growth. This is not an experiment. She is all harmony. She sees to oars and oarlocks for the dinghy, has placed wild flowers at the window at breakfast, sat by the potter’s wheel at midday, set forth three children under the moon, three cherubs drawn by Michelangelo, done this with her legs spread out in the terrible months in the chapel. If you glance up, the children are there like delicate balloons resting on the ceiling. She has also carried each one down the hall after supper, their heads privately bent, two legs protesting, person to person, her face flushed with a song and their little sleep. I give you back your heart. I give you permission — for the fuse inside her, throbbing angrily in the dirt, for the bitch in her and the burying of her wound — for the burying of her small red wound alive — for the pale flickering flare under her ribs, for the drunken sailor who waits in her left pulse, for the mother’s knee, for the stocking, for the garter belt, for the call — the curious call when you will burrow in arms and breasts and tug at the orange ribbon in her hair and answer the call, the curious call. She is so naked and singular. She is the sum of yourself and your dream. Climb her like a monument, step after step. She is solid. As for me, I am a watercolor. I wash off.