Dream of Fisherman's Husband

To Emil

Language is perishable skill.
It fades during day; it's like
Thunder at night. Night itself

Is semiaccurate. It brings
To bear this most precious of
Our commodities, time.

It turns to solace loneliness,
Pulls question marks from
Perimeters or peripheries—

No dimeter for gay revelry,
No limiter for frail memory—
Only tender calm of universe.

Sleep is for those who are weak.
(New habitat breeds new habits).
I must die man, in the arms of man,

So that, in one great yowl, I can
Measure distance between
φαλλός and ὀμφαλός,

And then rest, catching this
Unmetrical rise of your breath
On apostate wind.

    You toy with fire, sir, for deep in this coarse breast,
    Pulsates soft heart of princess, fast asleep,
    Within thick coats of bear fur clothed and cloaked.

    But what then if my Janus soul is stripped
    And, unprovoked, down to its bones undressed?
    Would I awake—rough bruin or mild baroness?

No light within this street, no life.
One drink imbibed with dinner
Makes stars foreign.

I walk bewitched by planetoids,
Or scent of laundry softener,
Wild parkway's quiet roaring.

I love you like I've never loved,
I think, as I make soup, the kind
You cannot eat. Fear isn't here.

And I am not afraid to lose,
For I no longer wish to own,
Or usury with oily interest lined.

No more percentages or loans.
I simply wish to know your mind,
As you know mine. And so,

In an orchestral silence,
I accept your every gift,
Your every handicap,

And walk in perfect darkness
Back to house
To weep in joy and wait.