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Love Poem in Monosyllables


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When you left for work, I found one of your long hairs
on the floor of the bath. It had six curls—I held

it up and thought the world speaks much of your hair—as
if it screams all of you—the lead in the school play—

the meat of your heart—as if it is the means to
speak to love and god—the life in the vein of life—

and I hope we can laugh at these things and the brutes
who talk of locks, who think of your hair with their hands

in their own hair or in their pants—who want to hear
small taps at their doors and see you drenched in rain—lost,

with no name, no way home. Men will have these thin dreams,
as their sons will. I love your hair no less, the sweat

on the back of your neck no more, but I don't want
you lost, wet or not, or a means for me to speak

to the shelf of age or god. If our heads were shaved,
eyes blind, our arms cut off at the joints—we would love.

(Is this too plain and gross?) I love the glad shape of
your face, your smell, taste, and love that it is all too

grand for words—so I use old ones like joy and grace—
and I love your tongue, the strings of words you make, the

knife of your mind, the vile hearts you break.
You, Jo, I
love.
I dropped the one hair in the bed of our bed,

so it would be there when I died and went to sleep.




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post #72
bio: john ball
perma-link
4/12/2005
09:52

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