So, one day you’ll be struck by the likelihood that the sexiest
most beautiful and graceful woman or man walking the earth
won’t be famous, they’ll each be poor, forever invisible to everyone
including you, to everybody skittering in vain inside a bevelled world.
Both of them as near mad as cut snakes anyway – but no use chasing
what you’ll never get. As we know that starlights coming slowly
long after their parts have died – a bit behind the speed of observation
the recognition of pointed features, that sure promise of fealty
we think about when we search the sky at night – are not there.
In small villages, unkempt and unseen, infected by ancient light-years
a contagious epidemic of peace sweeps through. No one knows how.
Frenzy is doused and people say a rare beauty lives alongside them.
It doesn’t matter now. But she, they’ll say, is not quite right in the head
or that he mostly talks nonsense about the stars and what their voices weigh.
And sad to relate, Louise, they never even met once at the village market.
As for the rest, their days esteemed by a proud strain of brilliance
they grow a little differently from others, sharper as each day passes
and no one reports their own blessing, or that their hearts beat better.
Sitting in a café today, plotting with no hope the exigencies of such beauty
knowing that any distant history of stars shall never be properly broached
and knowing what I always wanted was what was always wanting – I don’t know.
What entitlement could I insist upon? Admit only that she never looked for me.
Or we looked away like estranged twins seeing a little too much sameness
in the way each moved and talked and measured and cried out loud at night
whenever curiosity replaced loneliness, whenever sense told us we should love.
We could see each other well enough, though it was like shouting into the wind
calling their attention to the magnificent as, unhearing, we turn away.