blackbird online journal spring 2002 vol.1 no. 1



The First Season of Marriage

Spotlit by July,
   I'm nostalgic
 for the day I'm in,

  as if I'm starring
in a silent filmstrip
  meant to teach capability—

  running errands
in my geometric sundress
  pinned neatly above
my shadow,

   the silver key in the lock
of the silver Jeep,

   in a half-hoop
onto the onramp—

   looking out
as a way of
  drawing in—

  You've got to let him be
angry awhile
  my friend said,
handing me a prayer plant,
   salts for the bath,

   if you want
to make your marriage last

on the highway
   men tend the streetlamps;
the white cups that hold them
   jack up evenly,

  until each man uncleaves
a milky face
  lifts a bulb big as a hubcap

  that catches sun and spills

a diamond's jittered spray—

You've become so small,
   said another.
I am dimming
  along with you, now
how can we grow

how long
   have I not noticed
these lamps along the road?

—their gentle necks
    bending over us

like a needle
    in time, diving
the dark cloth—  

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