always the heart. Those matters
of heritage, lifestyle,
We make promises
and say what we mean
when we first say it.
Forever after we are somewhat unsure;
Did I say always? Sometimes?
Yes, I will walk each day,
eat more raw broccoli
and taste collard greens.
Yes, we will be kinder to one another, practice
lightheartedness, and forgetfulness.
By now some arteries are permanently closed,
but collaterals may grow, who knows.
Damage is indicated by various dashed lines
on the cardiac print-out. Your family doctor
will interpret these with you, and review
your wellness plan.
Blockages, self-righteous debates,
where to win feels like death by drowning;
selfish for air we grasp at anything.
How much tissue
has been greyed out
where once bloody and vital?
They call on her for one thing only;
she is built to lift the weight
they cannot. They attach safety chains
and she swings beam after beam,
rafter upon rafter,
up and over the building site,
and lays down each piece
in its place. She knows
her capacity and her reach,
the stabilizing legs
hold her firm.
Do not ask her to dig
or scoop or drag.
Do not ask her to change
what she does best,
her gentle lift, the ballet
of all she carries.
Plump curves and
burnished skin glowing,
not without imperfections but
what you see now is
what you already know
of her taste, nectar, quenching.
You imagine how your thumbs will gently open her
and your tongue will wrap itself
around the lusciousness
of each soft segment.
The air will carry her scent
long after satiation.
You reach for her
and close your eyes.
Oh, how her cool skin meets
the heat of your hands.