p o e m


My thirst too great :the bridge
higher, higher --under my windowsill
a pail, dented as if my lips
tasted its sweetness and I would drink
for two, stunned

still alive. Or dead --all the way down
pouring water across my throat
--fall loose --I am somewhere near
--you wanted rain. I never wept enough

and against this windowpane, over and over
a soft rain washes over the iron pail
surprised, picked up and cradled

--I am drinking from your arms
tracing in the river
half waterfall --under this window

your reflection calls out
as in those stories where the apple is filled
with a girder and death and a love
boundless, asleep, lowered
from some old crone's tree

--it's not enough to lift
--this rumpled glass :lace and folds
and hem and every bridge in the world
wants to leap for two --it's that you want

rain, that the sun left soaring alone
be cooled, be higher and higher, reaching for
you, for the shattered river.


        Simon Perchik, 1998.

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