I heard you in the garden

& I was afraid I was naked so I hid.


I was naked because  I was afraid

—I said to myself.


Vox gone hidden in the imbecile garden.

In the traffic I hid me.


Fear smells mineral, petroleum, sumac, rain-lustered.

I drink the drams from its awe-silver limbs.


I heard your voice purpling like bellies of Peruvian

blues at various depths in soil. Away-from.


Artificial lights, they leave the leafy

night looking icy in unfinished colors.


I heard you say magenta:

three syllables swarming out the voice box.


Swarm brings back no mauvish/cyan/crimson

to your sightline but some tv snow.


A needle dragging skin-dust long the vinyl

grooves. Music acquires you in iotas.


As static I heard you whirling around the vinyl-

dark round & round—


Adrenaline alters the hide, hair.

I was afraid of the paradise in my ear.

Copyright © 2021 by Carolina Ebeid. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on September 17, 2021, by the Academy of American Poets.