Of Hands and Backs and Feet

There’s that thing I want
the one that’s so simple

and elusive.

The one that has your weight on my back
pressed and much too warm
until there’s no space between us
but there’s the warmth and that laughter that comes out hard and sharp
because I can’t really breathe.

The thing I replace with things that
are much too complex
but far easier to reach.

The ones that sully my hands
and busy my mind
and leave my heart alone.

There’s that thing I want
that has me talking about hearts
as though they are something more than gory pumps.

That thing, the one that has me
thinking about bare feet in the rain
you, perched atop that low wall so you were taller than me

the way your hands on my shoulders weighed nothing.


The best thing about my day

Sitting on the benchtop - me at the tail end of my popsicle, he just nursing his. Long shadows stretched across the field. We talk about the birds, the black ones.
They’re called crows.

    Yeah, crows.

You know, they’re really smart, crows. They can recognize people’s faces. Like if they saw you a lot they would know it’s you.

    Why do they bother those small birds, then?

I don’t know; maybe they’re trying to keep their food to themselves.

    Well they’re not smart if they kill those little birds, then.

My popsicle stick, now partly chewed into splinters reminds him of a cigarette. I worry about locking up and about his mom coming late to pick him up. He’s been the last kid here for fifteen minutes now and I’m just subbing so I have no numbers to call, no key to get back into the room. We just wait together.

    I’m so lucky.

Why do you say that?

    Cause I get to be here with you.


Corny Love Poem v.1

It’s now, he thought.

He had been in bed,
half-covered, entirely naked, and fully awake.

The water ran;
she was up.

It's now, he knew.

It wasn’t when they awkwardly met through Judith.
Awkward because they could each see the other look away
and hear the other fumble
and trip over tongues.

It wasn’t when they first made love
or when they first fucked,
when they could feel each other fumble
and trip over tongues.

It was almost the time he saw her at the store, unexpectedly.
She was scrutinizing the shampoo aisle with her arms crossed,
one leg kicked out, heel planted – exasperation as tableau.

He slipped behind her,
kissed the nape of her neck as his hands slid under her jacket
and wrapped around her into familiar warmth.

He felt her tense – an involuntary spike of panic.
But it was so brief, so sharply and immediately curtailed
as his fingertips and lips pressed into her.

She just stood there as her heart slowed and eyes closed.

They walked out palms pressed desperately together.

It was almost then,
but it wasn’t.

It was this morning in bed,
when the running tap had pulled him from sleep.