in, leaves hunched
on her shoulders, stages a strip
with a feathery boa, tosses sweet gum
pasties to the ground like starfish
beached on the neighborhood's tar
Puts on a maple
leaf bump and grind
and a twirl of glitter, meanders
to the ground one glove at a time
exposing nude branches limb by limb.
I'm her cheap trick, searching for love.
Seduced by tassels
and a few curves,
I buy into marigolds on the Day
of the Dead. Aspen leaves rain like gold,
pay for a copper moment,
but deliver instead, a cold winter bed.
If tomorrow a
cuts the phone cords,
dries the faucets, cracks
the good china, but leaves my cups,
waiting for the promise of hands,
If life shatters
and I sleep on a splintered shelf,
a thin shroud, death-camped
between women whnose ribs and hips
jut broken saucers into my dreams,
If tomorrow I
into the bowl of my cup
for steam curls rising,
but my children's oval faces
ripple like spoon stirred tea,
how I would crave this kitchen
to hold the handle of my former life
this yellow cup
the oil of my lover's lips,
pressed flowers on the rim.
Today, too many
line my cabinets. One slides
through my fingers.
The shards cut my hands,
all my pretty lambs, chipped
to death tomorrow-
and nightmares redder than tulips.
Amy K. Genova