[excerpts from Head of a Man]


It is the soft expanse of warmth I crave now, warming me like summer dunes. (The lines are faint.) Her volume the talisman, the polished stone where water pillows. And the warm pale slope, suspended in light. (A field of orange.) I move over the expanse of her, her belly rising like a slow flood beneath me.


Here. Like this. Green shoots, sliced through. (White.) A mountain of cushions. At four the sun dropped low the strait glowed blue and burnt. Wind flicked. Through deep snow I drove her forward. Sonatine. Sonnez les matines. Bracelets rang on her wrists. Cuts to the air and sheen, the pale gauze rent. (Orion.)


All hollow. All hallowed. Banked between. The first cradle, held. Continuous, hard-forming, the long approach. The long expanse of skin. (Breath.) From distant calls the spire announces: here is gravity here is mass here is den. Coaxed ridges, crumbling. Anointment. Incense of ferment. Cinture, girdle, calf. A swaddle of thighs.


The placement of things matters. What is on the other side matters. (And good that way.) She sweeps past my door. She aligns the benches with the tables and wipes the floor boards clean. I try to hear what they say, but the rain muffles everything. Their murmurs do not last long, and then sweeping again.