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The Lovers


ISSUE:  Summer 1993
Here they are, the voice says.
Dear Alabaster, the two figures.

The bed, the sleeping and the meadow, says the voice,
and the meaning the two of them can’t locate.

Any minute now they’ll find it?

The man and the woman who are here inside the voice
that would love to sing efficiently.

Here they are as still-lifes getting into days of objects.

Dear secret, imagine them the way you want them, imagine
them transforming one another.

Poor mice, although they aren’t that.
Poor Saturdays of rain.

Any minute now and hand-in-hand they will pinpoint the small meaning.

Just as soon as they are finished, dear instigator god of exile,
lingering and exile, dear myth of charity,

god-the-irretrievable, any minute now it will be completely over
and the room they are spinning in together, ask it

does it breathe, is it dizzy?

And their upraised faces, and their legs, how badly they want
anxiety, dear modern context,

oh the hummingbirded pace of them,

this crazy-to-make-an-angel pair, cut and pasted

as if they were the upper air’s vocation, a notion
of accretion-by-accretion form

blown full of breath.

These hurried bodies and their languor, dear invisible design.
And the meaning never located. And the poor voice speaking.

Promise you won’t leave.

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