Just when I’m ready to call in the day and put it to bed without supper
you send the mockingbird who plays with his musical zipper,
exposing the World’s underlife.
You send purfume from the autumn olive
whose septillion flowering ears are full of bees
singing songs for the revolution.
Out back Jake’s Creek is speaking in tongues—
Missed you-missed you-missed you.
You wear me down, obsessively
rubbing your hands along my better judgment,
kissing the upturned noses of all my higher principles, until
my clothes are big as a mast sail,
until my longing leavens one thousand wedding cakes,
my longing is an undertow, and all the tourist beaches are posted: Danger.
Come for me—I’ll break off my arms and will them to a body
of water, hang my legs up in overalls at night
so they won’t come after us, feed
English to the birds in sweet pats of butter
Then our loving gets raucous—
white moths yapping their wings—you wag, you
wag in the little fingerbowl of me.
Your verbstem assumes declensions of mythic proportions.
My vowel sounds open on the south-most hallelujah side of the mountain.
Then metaphysically speaking we’ve stopped speaking
nuanced as a landscape in snow.
* * * * *
Poet and philosopher Deborah Slicer has published one collection of poetry -- The White Calf Kicks, which won the 2003 Autumn House Poetry prize -- and has taught at the University of Montana. Her work has been featured on Garrison Keillor's The Writer's Almanac and included in the anthologies Red, White and Blues: Poets on the Promise of America (2004) and The Autumn House Anthology of Contemporary American Poetry (2005). She lives near Missoula.