Roethke’s Sister


[Fruit, Alphonse Mucha, 1897]

Roethke’s Sister

I think of him, who allows me into his thought time,

brings me to a clean clear image in another life.

It is determined, it must be this way.

Things become one thing, stay a little while and then become another

for no reason. Change needs no reason for being change.

And I am not mother or lover and so cannot demand one anyway.

I fill this time as I always have constructing intricate decorations

of blood-red garnets, sky-deep opals. Christmas tinsels.

He talks of my milk-naked flesh cut

beneath the weight of decor.

Once again, I feel hope. I have felt this before.

A hope that never catches what it claws,

that keeps falling again and again. Then

forgets, reshapes, recurs.

One more stupid round.


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