Of The Words I Own

November 3, 2012


Of all the words I own
that I run my fingers through
like beads, like pearls
which one will bring you here?

Perhaps I should soak them in love and need.
Perhaps flowers in my hair
will do the trick.  Maybe I should write
a swinging hemline. A caress.
A stroke of finger or pen.
Fashion letters into the sound of a zipper
or maybe sweet understatement: come.

I’ll conjure a machine with wheels and engine.
Wings. Unfurl a sail. I should mention
that I can draw a map, or a compass.
I know your terrain. Your topography.

Perhaps I can wield needle and thread,
stitch us closer, tie a knot,
tear the thread within my teeth.
Melt ore and pound out a bell’s ring.

I’ll use magic. I can produce the scent of jasmine
as easily as I can use a moue
or a whistle only dogs can hear.
I can nestle humor within it,
sweet laughter, scattered marbles,
bait a hook, leave apples behind
for your bear to find.

I will paint something beautiful
like canoe or loon’s call.

Perhaps you’ll like it better
if I put my foot down
on paper.

I worry time isn’t long enough.

I will use clay, sculpt a dove,
whisper secrets
to bring to you-
even the dark, most fragile ones
to bring them to you.

They won’t be shrill, or weaponry,
nor speak of war,
though you have overthrown
the small country of my heart
slain its dictator, freed its prisoners.
I will call back your trusted steed.

Blow in on autumn wind
or winter’s breath,
set your course for me
I’ll hang banner and flag,
make tea and merry,
erect statue, sing, cry, bleed,
write our story,
the mountains we crossed,
the wooded trails, swinging bridges,
every word a heartbeat,
a tightrope between our lives.

Melissa I. Hassard
All rights reserved, of course.

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About Melissa Hassard

"What would happen if one woman told the truth about her life? The world would split open." -- Muriel Rukeyser

View all posts by Melissa Hassard

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