70th Birthday Of the Boy I loved in High School
You felt what I gave you,
shivering the propulsive physics
of that movement. What, all these years
ago, connected stars of an unclear
figure flat above us?
Come with me
to the river again: we will test Heraclitus,
kiss deep at the tender point of sleepless change.
Physics is against us.
We move away, we pull again,
the glass-green beetle barbed to your skin. You
whisper, " Go, go, go." Fifty years. Creeping cats
hunt lonely among cemetery stones. I am in you,
I am in that river. I am gone.
B flat is the note. It kills me,
not despair but the scraping
of the spirit from hard edge,
the painted eyes, from nothing.
Oh, it is us, sorrow the fugitive
balance, the humming tedium
of twitching wire. No touch
preserves us; music hurts, air
burns us. I will forget that indentation
running down the center of your chest;
the fit of my hand there, the finest-tailored glove.
No truth to love, sneering riddle, the bang, chop
puzzle of need, desire.