The First Marriage
February 17, 2015
Feb 17, 2015
One thing is kind to another thing when both things are wounded. It’s planetary how
it starts. Lover, there’s a little sea,
little sky, and a large landmass for reckoning. It’s routine. It doesn’t taste like berries
or a carafe of glass.
There is an abandoned zeppelin somewhere off the bridge. You can’t trust a world
with sky in every direction.
One thing is cruel to another thing when both things are wounded. It’s all flick and flack.
Once birds were the way we imagined
ourselves leaving. Lovers hemmed me up so I’d fit in the world and now I am too small.
Keep spinning me good
so my atoms stay intact. The buildings demonstrate it every day, like so, like so. It’s far
too easy to come apart.
How do I make you happy when we are half born to fail and half to run wild through
an unholy earth? I carry you
more and more. One thing is kind to another thing when both things are wounded.
When you’re a wobbly horse, I am
a wobbly horse. When you’re hungry, I am hungry. When you’re headed toward the future,
I’ll be holding you
back. Little bumps, we caress you as our own. We’ve taken the last shuttle and have been
barefoot in the station for what
seems like years. The signs say we’ll ache upon arrival. The signs say we must gently burn
as we board. One thing is cruel
to another thing when both things are wounded. Once we borrowed some vintage wings
and flew back toward a guttural machine.
When we couldn’t stop, we let it suck us toward the rooster house into a rattling coup.
At first the birds were startled. They let us
have our bodies into the night. By morning we were pecked into small broken pieces,
for the first time, proper lovers.
We lived like this for years, inside the same gray hen, whispering between rib and gall,
oh marry me in the minor light.
One thing is kind to another thing when both things are wounded. The hen got tired
of our breathing and for days she wretched
and wretched until we dropped down, one single egg to warm and herry. She loved on us
for weeks, warming our shell
with her soft bottom. This is how we learned intentional closeness, sinew to sinew, near
of the world. As the sky darkened
she took our egg in her claw and flew off with it toward a heavier blue. Everything is not in
its right place. There’s nothing to circle, nothing
to save. No way to be only kind or only cruel. We don’t need disaster to teach us ruin; the
blazing with hurt all over. We were fine
inside that egg, one yolk to get us through. Then with a squawk and flap, she said I-love-
speed and cracked us in two.
While we have you...
...we need your help. You might have noticed the absence of paywalls at Boston Review. We are committed to staying free for all our readers. Now we are going one step further to become completely ad-free. This means you will always be able to read us without roadblocks or barriers to entry. It also means that we count on you, our readers, for support. If you like what you read here, help us keep it free for everyone by making a donation. No amount is too small. You will be helping us cultivate a public sphere that honors pluralism of thought for a diverse and discerning public.
February 17, 2015