"I cannot chain my soul,
it will not rest in this
clay prison of my flesh,
it has no end of needs,
it wears me like a flame
and all my hungers grow. I envy—how I envy
him whose soul turns out
all its energies to one end,
to elevate an aim, pursue success,
to have one joy, but one in life,
so it were wholly mine. Oh, to feel that chain twist round,
to hear the stroke of the riveting,
to be free of this weight
of too much liberty.
You can do this for me, be my aim
my end, my bars… my home. -"
virgins at noon.
Summer seethes outside, a bloated temptation
A needle drops on an anachronistic record
She always did love her antiquated affectations
Sepia filters, old cigarette tins, we’re bored
"It’s like watching water boil", she whines
Which I never really minded, I can depend
On the slow inevitability of heat plus time
Water always boils, summer always ends
But this is waiting without expectation, we
Paint red our ripened lips
A couple of concupiscent peonies
Just aching to be picked
Modern devices remain hopelessly mum
In cloudless skies rises unimpeded the sun
Our tedium drones undisputedly on
"Fuck it," she cries. "We’ll make our own fun."
We sip spiked juice out of Mason jars (of course)
Sweat drips down my inner thigh
My eyes dance eagerly across the sea of short
Shorts and bare skin. Montreal, my
City is bottled sex, eager, barefoot and heady
I am baiting, turned on like an electric coil
Tightly wound, hot to touch, scared but ready
Just waiting for the water to boil
We suck the marrow from the bones of this dinner we earned, the meat is stringy and warm on our tongues. We are dead-eyed and exhausted, too hungry for manners, too tired. My back aches from 4 million years of standing on these two feet and I feel every minute, every second of my genus.
"Everything is out of place.
I had a tomato for breakfast;
put on mismatched socks and
thought, who gives a damn?
I still miss your hands.
Nothing is where it should be,
and I adore you like the
thunder outside— fiercely,
with no sign of stopping."
Where shall I keep you?
"their lips brushed like
young wild flowers in the wind."
"Do you imagine at night someone
going to bed the very moment
you are going to bed? Turning
out the light?
And isn’t it so quiet you swear
the heart is telepathic.
'Night is a history of longing, and you are my night'
you said to me, and left me
You left my night to me, and yours, and both so cold
and I will be hurt by winter and memories of you
and you will be hurt by the scent of my lilies in the air
— Mahmoud Darwish, from “She said to him,” A River Dies of Thirst. (Archipelago Books, 2009)