by Bonnie Shiffler-Olsen
Crow’s feet. Pointing
in directions taken. All wrong.
Spring fling melted
into a slow summer tango—
a liminal romance &
you offer me ways to live:
creams and vapors,
a softer place to lay.
And as we entwine, cradled
like crabs, limbs clutching
the cardio echo of the other,
I ask if you might be kept.
And rocking, breast against breast
you confess your fear of cages.
I toy with thoughts in an adjacent room;
you are a better hostess than I,
admiring self-reflection in tall grasses,
the dandelions gone to seed,
insects, a surrounding conundrum of beauty,
cicada static: variations on a theme &
you emerge. Like a child’s
fascination with what is not within the box—
we pour ourselves into ill-fitting molds
until cracks appear.
Count the futile attempts before the clay holds
true to its design and we discover intent.
Pretense or predisposed,
prepositional and packaged like ladle and broth:
cupped hands and waiting lips
reaching for the reciprocated gift.