Portrait of Adamine


The sunlight was 24 karat and a soft
breeze was cuffing the pines on their chins.
Adamine and I were standing by the water,
so close, I was afraid

of falling in.
She said, "In our rather pleasant time together
I have found you to be brilliant
without all the fuss of brilliance

or anything in the least pawnable as interest."
Such discernment can be ungluing.
I said, ''You can't imagine the wings—"
"But I can," she says, ''You keep them folded

in a shoebox, wrapped in twine
and then silk you personally pull from the worms.
In the end it looks like this—"
She handed me a smooth, oval stone.

It shook and was unbreakable.
She handed me another
and another. Soon she was out
of earshot, then she was a glint

in a vast landscape.
Against this background I prop what I remember:
she had ten fingers, at least one sloped shoulder,
a curve down the nose, mouth, neck,

to the collarbone which I can only describe
with my finger and, I believe,
two eyes—but don't hold me to them.
Something similar to a long time

is passing. This land is very remote,
but the water tastes fine and I have even found
a piece of air that resembles her mouth,
through which I can see a continent of turning

away. The views alone would break you.