If You Come Over

It's still dark outside,
too cold
   to have coffee on the porch or take a walk
          around the lake, but if you come over,
I'll keep my hands to myself.
	                  Really.
	        I just want to show you
the new watercolors and my latest oils:
	          a scented jacaranda
           dripping over the cedar fence in the yard,
leaking onto the sidewalk.
                  The white brick wall
                                            splattered with poinsettias,
                  like the aftermath of a shotgun.
The rippled lake washed in gold.

I have tried to tell a story, to make a record of things.

	    Many things have happened since you left here,
      most of them disconcerting.  A man in my office
put his hand on my thigh,Β 
                              so he could try to know me better.
I left early that day for a doctor's appointment.        
My test results came in,  though I already knew
	I have anemia and amenorrhea
and a small heart murmur. 
I had a lot to think about
on my way home; I hardly noticed
                                           the man on the sidewalk
	until he whistled at me 
long and low,
so I would know he was hungry.
                            Never mind.

                              But hey, come over.
Winter has already polished off October
and I need another
			pair of hands
on my rib cage.  I can hardly tell anymore
if I am sketching your face
	  or just imagining you
     on the front of the cereal box.
This morning we could do something
                                            together.
We could act out a scene where we fry the eggs
and bake the sourdough ourselves. 
	Where we open a book and flip through the pages.
Where your hand rests on my shaky kneecap. 
	                                         We could rewrite the scene
                       where we let the toast turn black.
And I let you see the cities
	glowing in the center of me.

It's impossible, you know,
to feel calm in a city.
            Without the sound of birdsong. 

That why every love song 
begins like that:
with a sweet piano,
so two cursory people can pause
to kiss
                                       in a doorframe.
Composed for just that moment. 
      That's never what I wanted
                                             with you.
I wanted to be the doorway,
	        the trapdoor that you would fall through.
The pair of hands
to open you
                          like a moonflower.
To whisper inside of you
	                like an echo
                        begging you:
                                          ruin me, ruin me, ruin me.

53 thoughts on “If You Come Over

  1. Pingback: Breakfast For Two #Poetry : #Philosophy of #Love | johndwmacdonald

  2. This reminded me of something I just read in a Kay Ryan essay:
    “It’s the strangest thing; the poem is a trapβ€”that is a release. It’s a small door to a room full of gold that we can have any time we go through the door, but that we can’t take away.” This quote, and your piece made me think of a trapdoor, something one falls through, perhaps somewhat thrillingly–and willingly…Really evocative work.

  3. Everything about this is absolutely amazing. You’re a brilliant writer and know how to turn a poetic phrase. The layout works so well, and your ability to just sprinkle surprises throughout your poem is striking. In less words, love it, love it!

    Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

    Cheers,

    Mike

  4. Holy crap. Mouth gaping open in mute astonishment. Wordless in the face of this:”It seems like every love scene
    begins with a woman in the doorway.
    That’s never what I wanted
    with you;
    I wanted to be the doorway,
    the trapdoor that you would fall through.
    The pair of hands
    to open you
    like a moonflower.
    To whisper inside of you
    like an echo
    I am, I am, I am.”

  5. …bundle of accolades here that amount to mere applause…this poem enlargens the envelope & so enrichens the vocabulary of what can & cannot be said in english…these words are spring dew on a desert rose, a bottle of pinot noir one does not want to finish! ^^~~~~

  6. I felt the intensity of the elegiac sadness, the drift of days, the pain and acknowledgement of dis-ease at mortality, of love, life, sorrow… the leavings we all leave, the traceries of a momentary stilling of life.

    thank you again, quite wonderful!

  7. Hey, I really like this poem, and I think that the spacing you use adds to the overall effect. I am curious as to how you are able to get this on your wordpress page in that format. Many of the poems I write utilize a similar physical structure but I seem to only be able to right justify or center my text when i get it to my blog.

  8. I love this! “I wanted to be the doorway,
    the trapdoor that you would fall through.”
    Absolutely gorgeous and I can totally feel this! Wonderful piece!

  9. Hi,you’re very talented I must say, sensitive and immediately scented like your ‘jacaranda’. Honestly, I’ve never known this word before. Delicious poetry to be acquainted with while having the morn feast. Pardon, couldn’t restrain myself.

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