Perfect, white, and uniform
the snow that fell
the morning it fell on.
That isn’t accurate. It fell overnight.
It just belonged to the morning.
Blades of grass and shrubs reached up
and hauled it snug over their flanks -
covering themselves, not being covered.
Made the most of a single inch: a bare quilt
so when you woke in the morning
the even sky, with no sun, equal gray
shrugged blamelessly -
it wasn’t me! -
and the frost settling
on shorn lawns and dying ones
was nobody’s fault,
was even imaginary,
would be gone soon.
I drove through it listening
to the sound of wheels slipping,
the exhaust freezing out of the air
to fall again in glassy flakes behind.
Everything crunched like a tumbleweed
and white is not a Texas colour
but I remember snow is water - it soon reverts,
and sluices down curbs, ***** gray.
From this and other colours I made your youth,
put wallpaper never seen into your house,
like faces in a dream, and listened.
I was a smudge of teal lipstick on the mirror.
I was the steam behind the shower curtain,
the draft in the attic. I had no colour
and you looked right through me.
I remember by description only, but still I remember.
It all runs together, these strong colours,
like a fainting plaid, out of size.
I know the hot furrow in the clavicles of women,
but not of men. I dive into the known hollow, breathe the leavings
of the unknown. If you hold me firmly, perhaps,
I will know what it is like to be held firmly.
Curry simmers on the stove.
Lemongrass creeps along the floor, snakes beneath the doorjamb.
Behind it is frost, knocking, dragging its heels: heavy with winter.
Just ask me if you plan on any funny business.