Donna Hill





sometimes when you speak

I hear the echo of your
massaging my skin
they whisper
pour newness
into my hologram
a calmness
that I seek
and again
soft as a sun-ripened
peach to my lips
inhaling its tranquility
like time's shadow
spidering itself
over the dawn of each
new season

the ultimate trade

hands tiptoe to
I lay in bed reading, the beat
of still air silenced only by
our breathing
myself, a dog and two cats
my eyes suddenly
wander. hanging on the full length
mirror is your rosary, a collated strand
of clear beads, each
encased in a lacy dome of tarnished brass,
I remember how it came to be mine.
that night, you held them
gently wrapped in your hands
the rosary nearly matching the reddened
make-up I thought they had used too much
of, touching up your moustache. but I
couldn't let it go, something
of yours, perhaps of grandma and grandpa's
and somewhere in that fog of time
between your viewing this night, and funeral
the next morning, I asked
for a trade...another cross on a chain
found among your things
for this keepsake
this rosary
I don't even pray

something he always wanted

she hears
him say
reaching for that
smoke curls
through the window
misty night rain
bends to soothe
his breathing
as if
her long hair
he faithfully craves
to keep brushed aside
held up
entwined in warmed
is too much
for him

your tongue sharp like a razor

you were cocked and held ready
I waited
I waited
the day came
you never fired
dull skies never danced
amber between us
'til we parted
now you fly
your tongue sharp like a razor
double edged
brought ecstasy to my core
sadness to my soul
sliced words due me
before I could taste their salt
no, before they were formed
I waited
and now I've stopped

let the blood
from our wounds
cease too

a time of purity

bouquet of fresh daisies
for the bride's maid
dozen yellow roses
for the bride
baby's breath sprinkled
silencing truth

in the end, even
yellow ones bleed
red, cease to menopause
dry up like blood clots of time