A poem for New Year’s

29 December 2007

[Untitled]

I work so hard on a cathedral of ice
that only my breath gives me hints of cold
My sweat freezes in whole drops
From hot-chocolate pillows
you see ice drip down my face
and don’t see coming cathedrals, like I do
Have you lived, who make snowballs
with gloves, and never
have felt the burning snow?

I run every morning under wet
boughs that curtsy their leaf-tips
onto my brow
On my cheeks appear drops of Polynesian seas
to jewel my ruddiness
All of my hopes are in puddle-reflections
but your eyes are up
and you don’t see yourself
in puddles

You see me walk barefoot
down the street
This asphalt-gold, clear as glass, burns my sole
What better salve than grass and dew
and new-felt fleeting injury?
You wear shoes on liberating
summer days so hot
that I take a shower and as soon as I am dry
I am sweating a good sweat again

I destroy my pile of raked leaves, quick:
before the wind can spread them again
and ruin my chance to fall into sweet
crunch. Do you trust in the solace
of underfoot crackles?
Unperturbed is your pile
—are all your things
that make no sound and have no smell
that never crunch or die

Reposted from the old site: Thursday, January 1, 2004

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