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Touching scars

by Christina Gleason

There is the one,
the seismic seam
of your spine,
the limbless stalk
of a plant budding
its tiny pink knots
over each rough
wedged bone.

I didn't know you
when you were not
upright, when the arc
of your neck extended to
a looming question
mark, but I know you
now you have been
uncurled, rolled back.

Next I tease
the tender line
of disease, cut away
beside the groin,
dragging fingers beside
the sad substraction,
the thin phantom
ache of manhood.

Nightly I search
for the cool steel
under your smooth
skin with my fingers
hinged like wings
over the hooks
that stretch
and straighten-

I press the long
and lean of you
under dark sheets,
palming the flat
muscle of the inner
thigh as it drives
against the soft
weight of sleep.


Author's Note: The fingertip catalogue, feeling out the poetics of it all.

Posted on 05/12/2004
Copyright © 2024 Christina Gleason

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