Your Hands on This Rail
Your hands on this rail
poised like a pianist’s
are birds in the slow movies
my father shot with his Super 8,
jays that live now only on film,
hanging forever in the breezes of the ’80s,
the dust of those summers
that stuck in my mouth
like the retainer I’d pluck out
to point at girls on the playground,
a disembodied organ, pink as sex, alive
as the moths I cupped in my hands,
the pulses and smudges they left with me,
their ashy vanishings into that pasture
in Iowa, full of cricket fire,
that held my house and the day
in my twenties you lay on my bed,
peeled off your socks, lifted your throat
up to me, the image of your skin
folding in and in me where
it is still coiled, like a reel of film,
waiting to be threaded through light.
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