They had known each other since high school.
And the soil was sweet between them. So
sweet, he did not have to plant his seed
just gently cast it on willing ground.
She marvelled at the elbow that caught
like some beloved trap beneath her
ribs. The foot testing from inside-out
her skin’s trampoline. It was safe then
from September’s mercurial wind.
Some space in their imaginings was
filled with an ultrasound that bounced light
and dark: cloud travelling across a
field. Their loose panicles of talk on
sleep-edged nights took on a pinkish hue
and would accrue as flesh and blood, so
light and airy as to barely set
above the roots holding cord to earth.
And it was then tenderness was born
in them. They held close each small exhale
of scented talc with amazement. But
after barely eight weeks, the baby’s
breath was gone. Those two were the glass which
steam in a room sometimes settles on.
Often they found themselves see-through to
each other. At other times, opaque
when neither could clear the smallest patch
of mirror within, that did not ache.
from 'A Modesty of Flowers’, in Counsel for the Defence, IPSI Chapbook 7