Orphan poetry or Paradise lost: I. Back Garden

Back Garden

I wish I had the patient will to unwind the miles
of iron spider’s thread that binds my love of you,
cuttingly
to my best-favoured pound of flesh.

I had a dream the morning before I left:
we touched each other so slowly that
a millennium might have passed
before my palm traversed
the radiant tenderness of your back.

You spoke to me in single words that expanded
downward like saturated leaves through still water
towards which I swam against
the natural buoyancy of awakenedness
that is unforgivingly attracted by dilating light
and found myself standing
in the wet grass of my friends’ back garden
smoking my third Gauloises.

I see a single strand of spider’s silk
resinous with dew;
well anchored.
Out of some odd, perhaps misplaced respect
for its unbroken beauty
and its slender strength.
I press four fingers against its sticky, resilient length;
I make it bend,
but do not make it break.

copyright 2011 bonnie mcclellan all rights reserved