Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Love Poem


His hands are large steaks at the end of strong branches, and when he closes his fingers together, they form such a perfect surface, a tapered oval, flat edges coming together that it appears as if the hands were once land masses shaken on fault lines into five peninsulas; the shores still mirror the other’s across the ocean of splayed hands. His fingers are not radiating twigs of a branch; they are slices of bread from a loaf, vertical cuts in a cake.


His hair is black and salted. He is hardly aware of this. But he knows about his eyes. What color are they now? -- he’ll ask a woman looking into them for the first time. I answered, I don’t know, but they are too light, too light of some color that is not green nor brown, certainly not blue, and they are reflecting most of the light rays here and sending them back in the other direction.


His luck is a whiskey drink; the reliability of broken things tied together. Maybe in the original order. Maybe not.


He’s assumed the suit of a train-jumper, generations behind his time. He’d play the banjo if he could, and says he’d prefer to be on the way. But for now, his train-legs aren’t rocking, and he sits on the ground with me awkwardly strumming.


His middle is the fulcrum for his see-saw shoulders; it’s where I like to hold him best, and his arms are crusty with soon to be scars from splinters and nails and pieces that fell free of the things he was building: houses and roots for other people.


His sounds are dinner bells and symbols and books falling off shelves sometimes. I jump ten feet, but then he reaches out, and his hands are cradles at the ends of strong branches.

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