meet me in front of a jazz club
in new orleans; there i’ll kiss you
hard. you have been lover
to me through lives upon deaths, your fingers
spread in my hair, your demolition kiss
a wrecking ball through love affairs
& marriages. but that night, before i knew
your kiss so well, it was & we were two martinis drunk
one after the other; the steering wheel biting
my ribs, my hands clutching at anything
under the headrest behind you. Surprised at the bar,
still standing when we emerged:
I wondered how, having spent a lifetime of breath
in that one kiss, how the things of this world remain standing.
Many thanks to Flashquake, who first published this poemin slightly different form in 2009.