For I can snore like a bullhorn or play loud music or sit up talking with any reasonably sober Irishman and Fergus will only sink deeper into his dreamless sleep, which goes by all in one flash, but let there be that heavy breathing or a stifled come-cry anywhere in the house and he will wrench himself awake and make for it on the run—as now, we lie together, after making love, quiet, touching along the length of our bodies, familiar touch of the long-married, and he appears—in his baseball pajamas, it happens, the neck opening so small he has to screw them on— and flops down between us and hugs us and snuggles himself to sleep, his face gleaming with satisfaction at being this very child. In the half darkness we look at each other and smile and touch arms across this little, startlingly muscled body— this one whom habit of memory propels to the ground of his making, sleeper only the mortal sounds can sing awake, this blessing love gives again into our arms.
On ashes of old volcanoes
I lie baking
the deathward flesh in the sun.
I can hear
a door, far away,
banging in the wind:
Mole Street. Quai-aux-Fleurs. Françoise.
Greta. “After Lunch” by Po Chu-I.
“The Sunflower” by Blake.
And yet I can rejoice
that everything changes, that
we go from life
and enter ourselves
like the tadpole, its time come, tumbling toward the slime.