Firsts

couldn’t sleep as the doorknob moved in dreams
and the windows opened, the river churned
streets overflowing with sometime
strings sleepwalking into her room, coasting over a bridge
I hunched over in jeans at midnight and cried
let me listen, let me feel who you are
and become the drums of ritual
who saw the king speak before you wiped my tears
you said, “I love you” and we drifted along Casco Bay
I chopped wood for winter and your mother said,
“That’s your man”

like one runaway train caressing another, attached
the pavement seemed to move with the weight of our hands
folding together
and none of our lines came to an end

I asked you for a touch, just a corner of your mouth
and you smiled, everything changed
or became wet with all the moments to come,
the rivets tingling when we could speak or sing for days, and still can
it always meant something, it always does
it always sounds like Elvin Jones screaming
when I’d meet you before dawn, crawling into bed
as the sun woke, the stone house growing warm with us
we said hello and time vibrated like the first crocus
there was space for flowers, a hand on your desk
and you held my face with your fingers, turned it,
said the words only “Lush Life” without words could explain,
and I said it too:
there is work to do, digging around
burying a birthday cake,
no more putting out fires, because it’s a flood
no more sleep, as we three are feathered all over
and this is where i’ll find me

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