Leaps with energy as I heave a side,
Sweeping the septic sheets into a mark
Of sound. I’m trapped in the mesh of a net.
What lies between us, a chasm as wide
As this city? Every chance, each hot fear
Dances, explicit as an unpaid debt.
Crouching, I explode the sheets in my ear.
I remember. Determined at your dustingYou were moving flat and in a conscience
Had scattered the place. I libelled the rusting
Cooker: you grinned, in a mock rage straightened
To cow my eye; but you rattled the fence;
Cataracts of custom fell, and your face
Was open; we hung; what had we frightened?
It was my move, sweat on my back like lace.
You on a bed! Those tumbles which surprisedUs; daft squeaky moments pulling a gasp
From tight ribs. A word in the gut survived:
You turned the blush of your body as doubt
Gagged my throat; I leant; your eye was a wasp
Active in its lid. Now the sheet above
My hairless chest chuckles and hisses out
The lonely times we managed a sort of love.
A siren screams like a drill. In the farNight a flightpath mumbles fretfully
Beyond the frantic buzz of lights which mar
The silence, stalking the empty streets. Love
Is this – each pore a crater as I lie
Picking faults like grit in the bed. I suppose
There’s an end, a settling, like the sift of
A wave leaving its sound after its loss.
====================© circa 1973-76