Saturday, January 30, 2016

hiraeth


i loved you in the worst way.

the way that wrote your elegy
as i looked across a table
and saw,
at once,
why everybody wanted you
and
the size of the space
you'd leave.

because of course you'd leave.

your beautiful bodies
so sanguine
your belltower laughs, clanging, unignorable
the din of your belief;
the sometimes-slurring sermon of the fucking faithful.
i bit my nails for you.

god, i wanted you to stay.

your faces perch on my shoulder,
one after another.
i can feel your smiles.
and your party looks bigger than my party
from here,
howling like happy wolves
and pushing each other into the Styx.

but i am not there.

so i scan this pumping purgatory
for a secret wave-goodbye

and try to place my cheek against that chest
before the earth does.



Sunday, January 17, 2016

Huis

Your Dutch came out of the kitchen so much sweeter
Rolled in purrs and dusted in crisp consonants
Spicier
With French flourishes.

It leaves honey on your tongue.
I can taste it.


Your fathers' names still line the streets
Cast in brass beneath a stone face that looks so much like you

And still your blood runs rooibos
And still you give "now" its magic names
And still you thrill to this beast-tramped veldt
Like the fathers of their fathers
Who first burned under this proud sun
And made it yours.