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Axiom of Maria

ISSUE:  Winter 1997
Clover fills the darkness quickly,
splitting open, spreading.

It’s a slightly different planet
that surrounds the same night,

an unction in the sun
that spins the Earth faster—

the couple pulls apart, turning hostile,
her body taking off into the wild,

his influence inside her showing
like a stripe, the same question,

Where is my palace, asked of the mountains
beyond her dream, as if time

wer e on fire, peregrines, herons,
burning in everything, singed by need,

as if all the metals in the world
surfaced, blowing out of people,

carbon, sulphur, gold—
the feeling she had had while climbing

was a feeling of being alloyed
with a shrinking attraction to life,

like a child suddenly old, a feeling of being
the greatest voice as it ceased,

rain hissing through her, a blue comet,
coming and going in streaks.


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