Lilac bough limp with rain
hanging across the fence, in the arc
of Chardin's rabbit (vertical, yet falling,
tethered to a leather looped from one stiffened leg
to a thick beam in the ceiling, its shiny eye a seed
of oil. An inverted crucifixion framed by an oval
of darkness, the rabbit's head resting
on the edge of a warn and battered butcher's block.
Pigment painstakingly built up grey over mauve,
bristled, blood-stained ears pointed, alert
at the moment of death). I imagine the lilacs
clusters f dampened light, will spring back
buoyant when morning comes climbing
up the white fence pickets. I step across
interlocking brick, shake the bush -
no dead rabbit masterpiece - rather,
simple woody boughs, various wet leaves,
deepening shades of green, bundles of mauve.
Cut one. Shake it. Vase it under carnal light.
Blossoms lift, living room fills with lilac desire.
Hopeful, I meet you with smile
and clean skin, the sun arrives for our kiss
across the frame of your bicycle. A good kiss,
brave meeting of lips in the middle of the street.
I look up to you. Not because you are tall (and you are tall),
but rather because our eyes lock and yours water gold,
and it isn't a reflection of sun or light changing
across your face that takes me
by the throat, it's the weight of those
gold-earth eyes, warming us both.
A kiss through opening sky, I saw the interplay
of grace and sadness on your face when you told me
about your wife. Between us was the brilliant frame
of your bicycle, its spinning spoke, the sincere wedge
of your voice. Above us, the oil-black cloud of the lie.
Frontenac House, Calgary
22 October 2016
“If the doors of perception were cleansedeverything would appear to man as it is, infinite.”
- William Blake -