Love Poem in Allelujah
Here are the things I would hand you –
the smell of roses and something peppery.
the small warmth of sweat.
keys that interrupt still
you used to touch tentatively
child gentle and wild.
Saying you are beautiful is not the whole truth.
You are beautiful and ugly.
teenagers climb wide
on a trunk of pohutukawa
I am drinking mango and ginger tea.
Your hair is hay/ a mane/ a serpent
when we fuck it tangles down like jungle vines.
It is sparrow brown,
Rapunzel, it is a nest.
at the next table a water jug
a slice of orange is a goldfish
a girl that says ‘I have no idea what I am doing’.
Dance hall palm trees wash against dirty boys in checkered shirts,
Cigarettes, pens, ginger beer
the plasterwork elegant and dated
you and she are oddly athenian.
Saying I am beautiful is not the whole truth.
You haven’t seen the ugly in me yet.
A sparrow chirps slow love to late afternoon light.
I would hand you
blue hydrangea in a paint jar
on a window sill.
You would hand me your quiet.
salty hours rising between us like gospel.