Lovely Needles

My love is a needle

attaching us at the vein with twine.

                        It hurt, sewed relentlessly,

                                    blood passing between us like we were saving each other

from loneliness, from stagnancy,

            celibacy,

                        from bleeding out through our pores–

Not the first time I saw you,

            nor the eighth,

                        but somewhere around the thousandth,

                        after years of acquaintance

                        and familiarity,

                                    it dragged me over by the crease of the elbow

                                    so it could dive below the waves of your skin

                                                until we stood close, just so.

 

Now chest to chest,

red stars fall into nebulae at our feet,

dripping off warm laundry

stretched between our ribs;

more like stalactites hanging off clothes lines

            in a cave with two walls,

                        framing our little hallway of the universe.

Sentient and afraid of heights,

they’re always reaching for the galaxy

            nestled in the tiny faults in the tile,

their forked tongues brushing the ground

            to lick up a star so another

                        hot-blooded young thing

                                    can slide off their scales

and live for a millennia in their long shadow.

Before I lost feeling in my limbs,

I used to pluck at the lines like a pick

so they sang for us,

but you always stilled my hand.

The song hurt your ears,

the twine grated against the soft meat of your lungs

even as I tasted the scratch of it echo in my back.

But now we are utterly still, a pillar breathing

                        through open windows a constant stream of humid air.

Before I lost the strength to see, I saw you watching

the curve of my brow,

stiffened fingers twitching up from our sides

            toward the needle stitching away at our throat.

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