Archive by Author | Emily

Flood

When time was with us,
there was this pulling to heel,
and oh,
how we would rise up
with the August heat.
And oh,
how we craved
its breaking to take us.

And,
like every other golden day,
I dreamed you here,
senseless and
against my will –
a storm that builds to breaking,
then builds to break
again.

And if time were with us,
we might ride it –
rising ’til the air grew thin,
then falling fearless
to let the flood overcome
and send us
where it wills,

fingers grasping
dancing fingers
to pull us under
and make us new,
to make us free
to break the surface,
climb and fall,
and climb and fall
again.

Chrysalis

Please,
let this be enough –
this deconstruction.

We are all to pieces,
bearing the confinement
of our form.

Something of earth.
Something of air.

Let it be finished,
this weight –
let it fall.

Somewhere there is an other –
where all yellow flowers
catch a light we can’t reach yet.

Let the wheel spin out
its thousand deaths.

These gifts –
ignorant acceptance
or transformation –
whittle us down to our simplest form:

the August sun
through paper-thin wings,
drying in its light.

Wait

When summer looked late,
its golden flag unfurled,
I found I’d lost my eyes;
I found I’d lost my words.

Close the door,
open the windows
and let it steal
across your sleeping form –
wait for waking to take.

And it is here,
somewhere –
that secret we keep.
But it won’t come easy.

We dream deprivation’s retreat.
And it will come,
so we place our bets –
even knowing how long
it takes to turn.

Unsay

Slow feet, fast hands
make the single,
St. Valentine’s cowgirl boots.

The fever takes me and I
wait for coyote haunt
and owl time.

The great shift back to one.

Betrayed,
I cannot unsay.

But we learn it –
what restraint has to teach.
Let gods or angels take it up.

We are low,
but we aim for consistency –
draw it inward –

and the elusive summer
still sings in the night.
In the night, it still sings.

Moonstorm

The blessing moon –
you count them now,
one hand or two.
It’s grown its face,
but hides in storm –
and I know how it feels.
I know how it feels.
I know how it feels.

Spring’s End

I try to dig you from the bone –
a complicated extrication –
but the weakening is beyond me,
and I need these nerves
for walking away.

What does it mean
when my footsteps no longer frighten?
You turn me such a tangle –
a constant call
to enough and not.

Still,
everything sings,
and I find the subtle breath.
Restraint
is a strange summer lesson.

Submit

Go.
Go and be what you will.

I held your ghost
like a shell to my ear,
but never had more
than an echo of ocean –
shallow and unreal.

And I do not know
what I would be,
but this battle does not serve.

I am tired of bleeding.
And I am tired of burning.
All to no end.

So go.
Keep yourself to yourself,
if you must.

And I will lay down
the shell,
the spear,
and submit
to this season of silence.

Reach

Just a rainy-day indulgence?
Today the roses are blown,
but it is the time
for always something growing –
we ride the swell of it,
filled to bursting.
Always something to replace
what’s gone.

She pushes him
to her feet,
and he plants kisses
inside her ankle.

You and I owe each other nothing.
But my shoulders
and hands get tired.

If only you could find it in you
to trust yourself enough
to reach –

If only I could find it in me
to step out from behind
these foolish convolutions –

Then all this lingering sweetness –
the air that follows rain
and pushes in upon us –
might mean something.

Earthly delicious

What did they know of this place
before its gate swung open?

A name?
Whispers of rumor? –
and yet,
they choose it.

Seed clouds uplifting
to the sun,
just so –
vision flames
and fades –
the insidious persistence,
the peril of the eye.

We never can escape it.

We must teach it
the daily incarnation.

Today, I walked in,
spider in my hair,
heat and dirt,
sweet and salty skin,
mud on my cheek,
ground into knuckles.

And he found a way to see that.

Offering

When you withhold it,
I want to push
past the soft edge
of these curves –
explore outside
the angle of your eye.

And I couldn’t tell you
what it is that hurts –
head, heart or hip –
only that the bending lines
bring me to this,
sand and dirt.
We dig in,
learning the lie
of old teeth and new.

I give it up
for nothing.
Let him take –
ease past the gate,
deeper,
a garden full of shadow,
shifting with the progress of light –
lowering my eyes,
I let him.

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