Thursday, May 17, 2012

Two by John Grey


Other countries are.
I am not bolted to America
as this one is or that one is.
I can catch a flight,
be in Canada inside the hour.
Or in Mexico in maybe four.
I'm not condemned to this street,
this town, this state, this anything.
The ocean at my door is nothing.
My loving you doesn't prevent me crossing it.
Sure I can't speak French or German
like a native
but who wants to be a native anyhow.
My passport's in order.
I've money for the plane, the hotel.
I could be a Scottish fishing village,
a Moroccan bazaar,
a Japanese theme park...
that's what you have here,
a guy with the potential
for being somewhere else.
You think that without stakes in the ground,
there is no ground,
that where you are
is where you have to be.
You call my name
but no louder than Helsinki
calls my name.
You make a home for me.
But I look at a map
and see no homes.


Imagine the sun is a blank page.
And your pen is your eyes,
too dazzled to see
let alone write.
Think of a lover's glowing skin
and your blind fingers
struggling to create a body
with nothing more than touch.
But think of that sun again.
It's a ball of fire.
Even if you make connection,
you still burn up.
Back to your lover,
how cool her heat,
and the flame your head must make of that.
Give us your life story,
even though it seems
pen on paper won't work for this.
Pretend we're the pages,
we're the lovers,
your anger is your writing implement.
That's right, lunge at us
as far as your chains allow.
Feel the links pull,
rip across your flesh.
Rough steel on raw skin.
That's how we tell our story.

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