Posted tagged ‘burden of the apple’

Uphill Climb

February 7, 2015


Uphill Climb

The snow holds no planks
unlike the floor we couldn’t walk clothed
when you first came,
and I move slowly through it, thinking
of sex and missiles,
poems and my head
by the TV table–sometimes we’d get all the way
to the kitchen and I’d grip the width of wall
of the doorless door, warmth spilling
over the fridge, its magnetic words

But wait–I trudge the snow-heavy
hill, good exercise
for a Lutheran–and remember how I had to shut
all the windows at a certain point
in that apartment, for weeks
after 9/11, there in downtown
NYC, trying to keep the seep of smoke out of
the old jambs, and the service at the church down the street
the first Sunday after, so crowded we had
to sit behind the altar, shaded
by the pomegranates, the ultramarines,
the too-stark whites
of that anglo-american
stained glass–so much brighter
than the wax pages of hymnal, ash of notes, blurred words
that we sang–
that we all  sang–though we trailed the melody
like the heft of the organ,
only it was not a mishmash of chords
that held us back
but the difficulty of singing

and I’m not really sure I’m still writing
about 9/11 but about some generalized
feeling of pain–the problem somehow being that I, you, we
have tasted
the apple and that it tasted so very sweet
we even bit
again, and somehow we, must all pay
for this–especially we, who are women–
with our breasts so capable of
pleasure and
of tears,
with our breasts that breath hard
uphills and tighten
touched, with our mouths
that taste and give

The sky turns dark
overhead except where there
are clouds that seem to carry light
along with fresh snow, and this burdened brilliance, I think,
is something to remember.



A draft/scribble/what you will for Real Toads, inspired by Grace’s (a/k/a Heaven’s) prompt on With Real Toads about the wonderful Cuban poet, Carilda Olivar Labra.