It always starts with a word...
A syllable or two,
Just a guttural hurricane stumble,
The larynx boiling over,
That primal vibration earthquaking the throat
With the molecules rubbing each other tectonic
Between two lips and an ear:
It's nice to meet you!"
Spoken like dry sand,
And then an avalanche of eyelashes,
A smile like land after seven months at sea,
A hand against the collar bone,
And a couple of hearts
Crashing around like caged beasts.
And just like that, we become cave people again,
Inheriting meaning for the first time,
Writing entire dictionaries with our bodies
And grunting with the weight of the momentous occasion
Of the discovery of a voice.
With a word:
It is so nice to meet you"
And then in another moment
That is another now,
I am tasting the sweat of your inner thigh.
And it tastes good.
In exploring the topography of your body
I have become a mapmaker.
The canyons of your finger prints,
The ocean of blue beneath your wrist,
The hollows of your hips,
They are the moment that the beat drops,
They are a painting that can stop me in my tracks,
They are the ways we have taught each other to build light.
Because the sky is constantly roaring overhead,
and because we have all felt that silent, empty ache on our shoulders,
and because death is always in the room,
and because the terror and the beauty are one,
and because there is something holy in our touch,
for all these reasons we must touch.
We are rhythm, movement, and measure.
Call me clock, and you time,
And let me hands move inside of you.
They are selling fruit in the marketplace.
Pears that drip
Mangoes sweet to the tongue.
Your tongue is in my mouth.
Someone is rowing on the harbor
His muscles taut
The sweat between his shoulder blades.
You taste like the sea.
The white curtains billow from the open window.
Somewhere a tomato
Pierced by a knife
Gushes its juices
Onto a wooden cutting board.
Our clothes are grinning at us from the floor.
A garden is growing in slow motion.
Your breasts are rushing toward my tongue.
The scent of lavender is lifting through the window.
Your skin is growing goosebumps.
The ocean is swaying its hips.
A seahorse thinks
A beehive behaves
Your nakedness surprises me.
In the next room
A telephone is ringing.
I want you.
At a middle school dance
Two kids sway together
Without ever hearing the music
Playing around them.
Their stomachs touch like electrocution.
The air is swollen with heat.
A mockingbird shreds the night
With a song drenched so heavy in sweetness
That the heart swoons to hear it.
The room is melting around us.
Your back is arching.
In the slanted light of afternoon
Through the window of an empty kitchen
Two dust motes chase each other
Around and around
But they will never touch.
Your orgasm is the fall of Troy.
Your body jerks and spasms
With the dying throes of Achilles.
There are gunshots in the distance.
We both hold our breath as flames lick the walls.
A moan escapes you
Echoing the screams
Of the murdered innocent.
From the street
The wail of an infant.
Across town a paramedic
Presses his palms
To a man's chest wound
Trying to hold the life inside
From spilling out.
It is all in the touch.
All our muscles are tensed.
Priam is weeping
To watch his great city burn.
The sweat glistens on our skin.
We are welded together.
Through the wall
We can hear the laugh track
Of the neighbor's television.
Our eyes are locked like a bank vault.
I have not used this body until now.
Paris returns his arrows to their quiver
And you shiver in the exposed air
And for just a single
We breathe again.