Sonnet 6

Out of smoke, out of clouds, I pulled down
these words for you—rearranged dried coral
to spell your name, bartered fire from the sun,
pulled the accents from overheard voices and laid
them side by side in your mouth to bloom. If only to
wake you with a kiss, slowly peel you like a grape—
to love you for the psalms of your shoulder, a chant
from your thighs, those slim cypress bones.

We are a pair of butterflies mounted on display,
strange creatures from different countries that have
stretched out their wings in awe. When my fingers walk
the shallow curve of your back—skin the color
of an antique held often with careful dark hands—
I am learning the path to the where you were born.

by Anthony Parker

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