A Crush before the Sexual Revolution
Now that I'm old this cold freezes the quarter notes of my thought.
Memory's just a jacklight of once. I used to hide wings & eggs,
damaged things, in a crawl space beneath the house. Colors lived in my eyes
as rejection. I stowed a pocket watch & buckeyes beneath
a sycamore, the clouds of Worcester. My favorite word:
mercurial. I've been summoned through Pig Alley, scanned lavender
fields on the Isle of Wight. I spied a neighbor girl peeing
a ditch when I was ten. Her skirt's hitch & crooked mouth survive.
It's like a hummingbird's quicksilver jab to a red vest.
These are bones in my soup, nevertheless. My father danced
a gimpy box step. My mother stole apples from Kunitz's
tree. One May, I photographed Priscilla in gingham & pearls.
She sang "sugar, cause sugar never was so sweet." At the edge
of Bell Pond. At the edge of Bell Pond. Later that summer she
beaded her thighs with my initials. She carved them there.
Before us this fabled moon sprouting
kale. The seet & caw notch at window, flare
yard's cherry, pear. We wait. In your childhood
language it is the same word as hope.
We sleep in swells & testas' burst, lengthen
downward before bed's tug & world. The dog star,
trips across sky
& a vinyl
seat where I wait for you to cleave, pull me in-