A revision of one of my earliest extant poems. Gloomy adolescent infatuation, ah!


The place I fell in love
with you was not a place at all:
it was a chasm whose entryway
was two black eyes.
I fell there and found you, Hawk.

When, after many refusals
you finally permitted me to hold you,
your wings were laden with nettles.
Perhaps you needed me to remove them,
to speak comforting words, to assure you
of a beauty you did not know you possessed.
Still your feathered breast resisted me,
     aspired to the dark flight
     against a sky of no stars --
You flew, o into blackness,
infinity your satellite and silhouette.
The same moment I rejoiced in possessing you,
I saw you move away in sadness.
Each time my hand,
was permitted to caress you,
your wings stirred skyward
at the hint of dawn.
                     My arms,
acquired wings, too, a mantle of despair
that only let me plummet downward.
Striving to reach you,
I fell deadweight at the black limn'd
          You soaring,
I a world-bound Leonardo
tracing the the arc of your envied ascent
as I sank into my own abyss of longing.

You circled. You returned.
One thunderstruck night
you thrust your beak
into my open window,
fluttered as though by right
to the foot of my bed.
Assuming that native form
that could always seduce me,
you pressed yourself against me
and offered everything
if I would forsake all
to follow you. And yes, I said yes,
for the proof of love is this:
if you love someone
you will go anywhere
to be with him. Anywhere.

I was this foolish once.
I have been this foolish each time
beauty coins words
it thinks I want to hear.

Somewhere, amid the mountains
that separate us, you have your eyrie,
the lone crag of your solitude.
Your days have been busy.
You have your pride, and your prey.
I do not think of you much.
I have my pride,
and five hundred poems.


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