January 31, 2008

MOTHER TONGUE

These circular words are dancing:

Carving rings into our chests.

Thoughts as brands, compassed

and encompassing the strange world,

returning, unsolved, to itself.

Scarring the irreconciled hearts.

What can one do but tremble

when the bleak ideas come,

unanswerable and cold?

One of us frowns, black eyed,

into the unknown fibres of his night.

The other twitching in her terror

of old discontinued discourse.

Of the weight of all those words

that fail, and the need

to engender them:

In the shifts of naked skins

in the reverent lipping things,

kisses, irrelevant, and sighs.

But what are these

when she cannot find the lies

to form your comfort?


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