For Ocean Vuong
This was what we feared, our beautiful
white bodies racing to the fire, early morning
raking our blood-shadowed skin. This was what we
learned, a sip of wine with that preview of our love, my
knees against your knees - our tremble an earthquake.
We touched our mouths with our tremor's heartbeat
measured by Richter. After our fire subsided, our words
cooled into an oven. Within the kitchen of our love
there are two clueless lovers cooking an uneatable meal.
There was always the smoke alarm over
the doorway. Ever another day to love - sometimes to
wish the gods to take it away. If not the kitchen, the
bedroom. If not the bedroom, the promise. If not the
love, its vestiges. If not traceable, give up the search.
This love is a fabric we've stitched into rags. This is
what we've burned: separate but matching garments.
This is what we cooked: a meal in the fire ending
up as ash.