Oh apple-bottomed Amaranthus, sweet to self’s core—
where lie you upon my waking? Did Apollo, that dappler,
that circuit-driven thief, pluck you from my side?
Did he turn your thighs, soft as the old goat’s beard,
into sunlight, that freckl’ng domain, so as to hold you o’er me
or keep you from me, as his wont? I had a whole night
of dreams to tell you…
I break my fast with honey, wishing for that combed
from your eyes, so much sweeter. In absence my stomach burns.
As I gather water in my gourd, I look over at the ravine,
the deep stitch of earth left wide for a god’s traipsing.
My hands numb in the cold water, yet were that deep cut
the sun, I could not break in my looking.
That night in dreams, your tongue laps into my small strawberry
flesh. My back arches again and again as if racked. Oh my mouth
and Ah all the hairs on my flesh Amaranthus.
Bears wander in from the North, zephyr-driv’n, though
I see no blood staining their giant mouths. Thirsty fur
shags about on them, the ungloss’d color of stone.
Did you send them, Amaranthus, to comfort me, while you
watch from afar through a pool of water, my self-spending
into dirt as the dream of you plays within my body’s music?
The bears lap the little goat flesh. They could of me as well,
such am I without you. Amaranthus, my nimbus of light
through these, my darkest days, did you send them
to touch me with their rough tongues and quiet my longing?
Spend yourself into the looking-pool. Even the touch
of bears most welcome now. Shall I be rent, bottom
first, by the furried pricks of ursines to please you?
Will you promise then, Amaranthus, to quit your distant watching?