“That is where our hearts break,”
She points hard and up up high,
to the hazy risen sun, the horizon, up, away.
Where stars fade.
– Her hand picks, twists, clutches, pinches, punches, holds.
Bitterly too. Sweetly too
Knits together, too, points hard, yes, and too, does softly caress –
“Between the earth that is waking and the sleepless sky,” she says.
She turns toward me.
Turns away. Presses her step.
– She looks at the uneven ground beneath our feet,
glances at our muddy boots. Disappointed.
She so fears to stumble – I start to cry.
I do not want her to see, say,
Don’t speak now. Look.
It is too beautiful for tears. She says,
“Our hearts must break,” she says,
“Broke by bones, sticks and stones,”
– I touch the tip of her rough elbow,
which is red, cold and dry, say,
Look. She does not look. Says,
– “Blown away lost under the wide blue sky.
Broken in milky fleeces, like dandelion seeds.”
Hot light and sweat in my eyes, weightless, swept along,
I step around, up in front of her.
Block her path. She backs up.
Chin up. Nose in the air. Palms turned out. Skin and breath.
Breath and skin. A rack of panting bones.
I reach and run my ragged fingernail along the light blue veins
running the length of the milky skin of her inner arm,
Which I love, say,
Listen. Sweetly. She does not listen.
And O then we, as she stands there daring,
sweetly we reach to touch the hump of her inside wrist,
there, where her blood pools and swirls over fine fish-like bones,
there, where blood hotly pours in and out from the woman’s hand,
from her stubby fingertips, to and from her hard beating heart,
thrilling under her sweet breath of honey & wormwood.
– “Who puts the sadness in us?” she says,
“I don’t know – Who puts the joy?”
- Tracy Danison