The Woman and the Serpent
I prize the taste of this rare fruit
above the sting of carnal knowledge:
of these teeth
as they pierce, then sink
in the deep,
I learned to breathe underwater
for the sake of our joining. I wonder,
take their lovers
home for tea?
Since to live I must pass this poison
on to another – or so I gather –
there will never be
a home here
Tomorrow Never Comes
The night before we left, I rearranged the dust:
swept it into new corners, left it in rifts
to die. And although good at planning trips,
I’m persistently amidst the forgotten mourners
of the one twist of fate we always fail to trust.
I had to send away for the one seashell
I’d always wanted–so rare that it cost
a small fortune, but this tale ends as well
as it must. Salt in lieu of what I’ve lost.
The morning I left, I scraped all the rust
off the doorknobs, canceled my options
on those dumb jobs. What is there for me if
nothing will come to me now? I’m drifting
away from your shore. Just stay or be gone.
I had to send away
for a skin-thick sail
to patch my wings.
“The Woman and the Serpent” and “Tomorrow Never Comes” appear in The Dishonesty of Dreams. Reprinted with permission.