First I saw the round bill, like a bud; then the sooty crested head, with avernal eyes flickering, distressed, then the peculiar long neck wrapping and unwrapping itself, like pity or love, when I removed the stovepipe cover of the bedroom chimney to free what was there and a duck crashed into the room (I am here in this fallen state), hitting her face, bending her throat back (my love, my inborn turbid wanting, at large all night), backing away, gnawing at her own wing linings (the poison of my life, the beast, the wolf), leaping out the window, which I held open (now clear, sane, serene), before climbing back naked into bed with you.
Reprinted from Blackbird and Wolf © 2007 by Henri Cole, by permission of Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Learn more about FSG poets at fsgpoetry.com.
Henri Cole was born in Fukuoka, Japan, in 1956 and raised in
Date Published: 2007-01-01
Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/homosexuality