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Peace of Christ,
The brush of your hand across my shoulder
Sends fire into my cheeks, burning away
My confidence, waning as the sun over the horizon.
I would chase you until morning
Dazzled as the night brightens your strawberry hair
Undone by the moonlight framing hazel eyes that
Always smile against a masterpiece rendered
In countenance, sublime in its glowing reflection.
Let my love rest beside your form, holding
Tightly your features till dawn snatches
You from my grasp, and memory dreams
Along the snarling contours of day.
I await the night and the fragrance preceding your touch.
Simple lives do not exist
Except in imagined states
Uncluttered by emotion or
Cooked inside the pressures
Of human desire, detached
From feeling, yet scarred
By its result.
Always, another stands by
Waiting to exaggerate
The faults of our simple
Humanity, like Cassius
And Brutus arguing friendship.
But friendship cannot exist
Inside the constraints of power.
Never again (but I cannot
Say never) would we succumb
Under the weight of unmet
Expectation should we see the
Depths to which complexity
Humanity overwhelms perfection
And simple lives do not exist.
One misstep and the foundation crumbles
Hurtles particles across the open space
People, too, spiral among debris
Settle bruised and battered upon
Tightly woven webs stuck in place
Caught in the throes of life gone astray
Results of testing temptation’s vapor lock
Decisions approach like meteors broken apart
Avoid one, block another, try to hitch a ride
Once it strikes, it’s too late to take stock
I tried in that moment to
Energize my weariness.
He told me I am empty.
I replied, “To my core.”
He mentioned neutrinos.
Particles so tiny they must be imagined.
“I’m imagining nothing,” I mentioned,
My casual tone belying my formal attire.
(Did I mention I was tired?)
He knew the math got lost
In this circuitous mind I carry.
I looked blankly as his lips dried.
They moved so quickly in the chorus of conversation.
He tried to illustrate the atom
By conducting his arm out across the city.
“They pass right through you,” he smiled
Triumphantly at this revelation.
I stood holding my caviar hor d’oevres and
Surreptitiously set the cracker on a stone railing.
Urgent tugs across my shoulder and
Elbow followed smiles and pulled me along in his draft.
Politely (perhaps), I stopped short within our space.
“I am a positron and you an electron,” I released my grim assessment.
He looked into my eyes as his smile waned, but not completely.
And nodded in recognition, understanding me for the first time.
As he moved away, I stood among the oeuvre of colors
Watched the elegant scene as one atom passed another.
Each smiled and frowned in their turn, yet interceded
This emptiness I am and with acuity I was filled.