Matador

Take me
sinking, leather bottles
hand to hand, white heat,
on a road to Barcelona.

Paint my hands, blade, and flag
with the lust of a matador.
Give life to the dust
with my heel—

hear it dripping:
bullpen, mad snout,
hooves carving
runways in the earth.

This is sickness or it is love:
wound of forgotten nights
Hemingway dreamed once
before a melting sun—

And the still beating heart
of those wistful nights in love,
too close
to end in steel.

Mirrors

Mirrors could not bring us close enough,
hands reaching at the water’s edge
suspended like a thread contoured
to your trembling lips.

Resemblance is not touch;
it is not hearing the current swell,
breaking distance,
fingers left to dance.

It is resignation:
the kind that waves,
that walks until the vanish,
and turns with its dawning eyes
to say

we are
we were once before

remember the nights
the way we questioned
how beautiful it was
to dream without sleeping
and where it all goes
when that border is crossed

We are there now
only one is lost
left pulling at strings,
hoping our hands meet somewhere
at the water’s edge.

They will not.
Mirrors could not bring us close enough:
no matter what I saw of you in me,
it was only me.
I know how much you kept.

Lost

This is the pain
the break
the sunbathed silhouette
in broad day seething
like a deafened hear me
I am not known.
And I wonder
was something lost
in the eyes when you found them
gouged with their tears
and did they stain
fallen on the skin
like a blistered riverbed
and did it scar
into a marble cataract

until the lattice fell
and it all became the night?

The Shore

I am these waters,
swept in all its braids,
a brushstroke of the gliding moon.

I am its child tracing,
building ruins in the sand
with voiceless ink.

I am the canvas
for the hand print and
its archive.

I am the oysters shell,
and its pearl, but
I am not reason.

I am not the book
you read to know, nor
its binding.

I am the footprint
just before the wave.
The hope of tread,

of knowing for a moment
the hand is near, and
saying goodbye forever.

The Island

To sleep in a room alone: dreaming–
how the mind seduces the body
to believe what is lost
beneath the eyelids like a love
that cannot breach

how time is the dissonance
of feeling, motions of a barren road
left silent in a ruin
of pointing hands and bloodied eyes,   how
the hands were severed–
how they beckoned escape,  how
the eyes were a swarm of resignations,
a mirror of assaults

how no one can hear you sing
with the curtains closed:
how they wouldn’t listen
if they could

how the room is sedated,
caverns in place of pupils,
reaching for the switches without palms:

how it all feels like remembering

how
you’ve never felt at all,
how
truth is a harvest of strings,
how
the mind is an island,
how
in dreams we forget
to dream at all,
and
how easy it is to think
it is our own.

Portrait of a Lover

Let the eyes falter,
else let them sing
of the aurora one shade
less of melancholy.

If unconvinced, drape
hunger from the lips;
let them rave into
the unkempt space—

feast on the disorder
dissolved from the canvas
white into your swaggering,
guiltless fingertips: remember

how the blood feels
on color until it is
the color, masking the torn
bristles of your heart.

When it feels transformed, whisper
your name into the grotto,
watching the eyes until you feel yours
close: taste the motion of her lips, and
seal it with a kiss.