21 February 2014

Much Obliged

Much Obliged
for p

They meet in the mornings,
Or whenever they can
Get away with it -- The
Hours between jobs, after
Work, before: within the
Tender margins of their

Respective days. They meet
As though performing a
Duty or punishment,
One without reason. They
Do not know why this is
Happening to them, they

Do not know why this is
Happening to them. They're
Secret agents: watch words
And violence binding
Silence to silence. The
Pact is a kind of a

Hatred perhaps; not kind-
Red, but kindling, for when it's
Over, they blow away
Like ashes. After, when
The after comes, when they're
Done with one another;

Later, after, after
That long hungering gaze
(Eyes are worlds, gravity
Pulls them near) then, contract
Executed, they look,
Look away, retreat, lurk

Off, blinking, their vision
Cleared -- who are you? -- faces
Composed now for other
Faces; they veer away
Back in familiar
Orbits. Estranged. Strangers.

© L. Steve Schmersal
spring 2000

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