And the clouds knew our names. And the river yelled good
mornings and good nights and called us ‘sweet things’ and
we would wave back laughing, toes dug deep into the grass
and eyes squinting at the sun, looking for the moon, counting
the stars,comforting the clouds black and heavy with darkness,
ready to pour their hearts out to us. We wore our hearts around
our wrists, carved forevers on our ribs like lovers’ initials
on tree trunks; nature: witness these vows; sky: clap me
open if I break them; love: hold my hand to where it hurts.
I’m here. I’m here. I have only ever existed in your presence.
I have only ever been alive whenever my ear was pressed
hard against your chest – your heartbeats reassuring
me steadily of my existence.
That one time, lover, we walked past a field of sunflowers,
tall and proud on the countryside, noses held up high
and facing their maker.
My sun, my stars, my sky, my moon: I could have sworn
they all turned to you the second you walked them by.
*Disclaimer: The title of this poem is an excerpt from Marge Piercy’s poem “Shadows of the burning”.