Look over your shoulder for the hustle of words.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Aubade for John

When I rise before the sun
and leave you,
the sheet falling from me
easily, a snake's shed skin,
I glance down once.
Pale and freckled, scattered handfuls
of curls framing your face,
you sleep like an ashen Christ.
Your mouth hangs slightly ajar;
your breath is the rustle of leaves.
Your hands tuck up, under the pillow
like they clasp a secret.

I carry myself through the house;
bustling and moving,
always, always moving.
Hands work, the mind covets
ideas and images that flit
as a bee between flowers,
legs pollen-heavy.
The tea is a ritual
to cleanse a tight throat;
a shower to wake
an unfurling body.

On my return, you're awake.
One hand is cocked to hold your head,
the other rests at your leg.
You smile, watch me dress
and all the time, behind your eyes
I see the turning cogs.
The divine fire has spit the first flame;
your day has begun.
The child asleep, the man awake.

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