I’ve met so many like you,
youth without a core of youth,
vibrant burst of arrows without a prey.
I have so many arrows,
one for every wound,
deep and intractable.
The boy clasps his cello around the waist,
and pulls the bow across, taut and sure.
To hurt is to love, my dear.
I have met so many like you,
so awfully well put together,
as carefully regulated as an air-tight scream,
sucking life through a straw.
From the belly of the cello comes her song,
gasping, moaning, creaking love,
all the pain of all the dead,
all the sex of the living.
Closing my eyes,
it devours me with insatiable gulps.
But you don’t close your eyes.
Do you feel how it all slips away from us, my dear?
The boy is burning up in his music.
And you think sitting there without fear
will conserve it forever.
I want your madness in a song.
I want the guttural scream I know you don’t have.
I want to see the rock of grief
you keep embalmed in your womb.