reflections on east twenty-third street
from the neon red lights and the
urgency of taxicabs on twenty-third street,
your voice rises softly and lights on my sill.
i am, of course, a fool and two thirds mad,
but your voice is the cool of pillows
on a familiar bed after a long journey.

you are near me now.

i trace with my fingers lightly,
as you lay reading, facing away from me,
up the curve of your hip, and am taken completely
by your sideward glance and the faintness of your smile.
faint lights now, and low,
the shadows on your body are epics,
now rising now falling, vague and everlasting.

it is darkness now, again.

i reach for you, to slip my arm around you,
to pull you to me, to feel you warm against my skin.
my cheek brushes against the pillow, warm with sleep.
i open my eyes towards you, and see,
through the muted red lights from twenty-third street,
my bed, violent, cold, and empty.

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