Thus your embraces almost promise you / eternity. And yet, after you survive the terror / of the first look, and the long yearning at the window, / and the first walk – the one walk – together through the garden: / lovers, are you still the same?
– Rilke [trans by Edward Snow], The Second Elegy
February sat on a cottage floor with a girl who smelled of smoke and honey. The girl was telling him that she was tired of being around someone who carried so much sadness in his body. February drew his kneecaps to his eye sockets.
February apologized. He rocked back and forth. When he stretched his legs back out the girl was smiling and running in place. February asked what she was doing. The girl who smelled of honey and smoke said it was to cheer him up. I don’t think that’s going to work, said February. I’m sorry, but it just won’t.
Just try it, said the girl who smelled of honey and smoke. Please.
Short list found in February’s Back Pocket
- I’ve done everything I can.
- I need to know you won’t leave.
- I wrote a story to show love, and it turned to war. How awful.
- I twisted myself around stars and poked the moon where the moon couldn’t reach.
- I’m the kind of person who kidnaps children and takes flight.
– from p.51 and 55 of Shane Jones’ Light Boxes