Saturday, March 18, 2017



I never understood it. The candy and chocolates.
The rose petal path leading to a boudoir or hot
bath. Not that I am an ungrateful lover but a circle
pendant meant to symbolize love or union loses
meaning over time. Know only I hold myself out
to you the way a young black cat holds a snake
in its jaws, alive and wriggling, the feline purring
as it offers its gift proudly to a squeamish owner
at a back screen door. Know I would cut through
a barb-wired border to make my escape with you.
Save you from a witch’s oven in a house made of
gingerbread, the chimney forged of red licorice.
Know I would break radio-contact, orbit around
the dark side of the moon, if it would be the only
way to bring me back to you. Heights make me
dizzy but I would stand at the mountain’s summit
just to hold your hand. Throw my transparent net
around the trees near midnight if only to attempt
to capture your unseen inexplicable pain darkening
their branches. I would stoke a wood-stove, pull
the quilt of our shared years up to your chin. Wrest
hope from shadows, sit in the sidecar of an Italian
motorcycle if you were the one driving. Oppose
despots if they took you as a political prisoner.
Light a votive candle, and pray to the saint of us.
Know the tape recorder is on, and I fully testify
although I do not yet know your name, my cold
devotion is only to you. My passport to where?
Not a place, never a place, but a flush of feeling,
our breathing carving our initials into the air.

By Chris Banks

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