A late-ish start this morning, and I want to get ahead with a new piece of writing before the day runs away from me. But, first, a wondrous thing from our friend, Alice Fulton, who just gave an incredible reading at Houston's Rothko Chapel according to Mark. I wish I'd been there to hear it. In this poem, I can't even begin to speak to how much I'm swept by that moment of sound and release, evoked by strings and frets, after the asterisks. Just say I sublimed.
BY HER OWN HAND
If you believe you would have caressed every lash
and freckle that I was
but for decorum, I appreciate the thought.
Have you ever been embarrassed
by a frugal kiss? It is embarrassing to live.
My love for my husband was all balled up
with mothering. I had compassion for any flesh
trying that hard to be iron. Imagine
living with his bluster and hiss
for forty years. Have you ever been embarrassed
by a frugal kiss? I died of it. Just say I sublimed.
Snowflakes do this all the time. Say I was tired
of eating beige, for heaven's sake. Of
molestations imposed by my own body.
Let's see. I wasn't stoical enough for me.
You might say I've eased into the trees
and the autistic fields: eyes like forget-me-
nots. "Desire." All that business you admire.
The human yen for angels is depraved.
It decorates death with heaven, longing
for the note I never left.
My last sound was like the small release
of strings and frets you sense
when a guitarist changes chords.
Enough to let you know the music's made by hand.
I am not without regrets,
picayune as they may seem or plain
grotesque. I do regret the writing.
I wanted to be self-reliant.
I wanted to reach up and shut
my own eyes just before I died.