A draft in progress, for an unspoken Valentine.
I read once, that
"artist Miyako Ishiuchi once noted an interest
in 'the way that time records itself
into things and people'," and
Ishiuchi wasn't far off:
I can plot the tension across the geology of your clavicle
find the smallest quiver in the corner of your mouth
see the small tectonics of question move their slow way into the mountains of your chest
and in their trace I see the slow march of time -
a thing both paused, held suspended in the unexpected moment of a touch
and yet speeding, furiously, into the enviable collapse of the known -
and I see it carve itself, shale itself, against the shut of your eyes, the twist of torso.
If I were more clever - Neruda, or Ishiuchi herself - I might hold these bodily phrases
in the soft, distracted lens of are-bure,
to describe our torment with softly plucked words
that wind up, quietly, like a watch face in the darkness
or notice them, as aftermath, as the personal, irradiated objects of our affection
the sense memories that resonate long after similar disasters had swept my life
but these objects can never belong to the past.
They belong to the unexpectedly deep river waves that drag me into the windows,
push me against the wall of my chest
to that tall, reverberating beat that slides me into a sudden seismic shift of view,
to the now,
and the landscape I once knew cracks, fractures, upheaves
(all of the tiny cracks become vast)
and I am thrown, wholehearted, into the suspended time of your abyss,
covered in water, drowning with the wait,
pulled through your fault, my New Madrid.