As the Eyelid Protects the Eye
Tonight, I might approach you;
That's possible. Might creep over the ocean,
Whose gray-blue waves would bend to my foot
As they bend to any good purpose,
And slide myself down your street,
Up the steps to the room where you are sleeping
In the striped sheets. Down beneath the skin
Of your skull right now dreams are sweeping
The way water sweeps in the shallow edge of a pond,
Dark and murmurous, amoral; untrustworthy,
But you don't know that. You let them drift,
Take pleasure in the sand they raise up, swirling
As if it were anything more than that,
The simple play of what is deathless
Because it has nothing to do with life.
And when I drape my invisible gauze
Body about you like the metal apron
In an x-ray chamber, don't be surprised
How they fizzle out like moths in flame,
How their supernal voices go speechless
As beast-barks, so that helpless choir disbands—
Because it would have been for this only
That the moon held steady her milky flashlight
And the waves went lead as I crept from my window,
That the granite of gravestones tightened
In expectation, and even the flowers beating
Like time bombs in the soil paused, breathless
At the event. Everything in the world knows
What you are too asleep to see. And wants
What you do not wish for now, tossing in transparencies.
Everything with life in it has my love
For you purled inside it like a strand of hair
Which, when plucked, releases volumes of feeling.
When I arrive, you will be like the sick girl
Of whom Jesus said, She is not dead, but sleeping.
With my fist on your forehead, my lips at your neck.