Sugar on the Lips of Dawn

There’s somethin’ primordial ’bout our ordeal;
the war is over but we’re livin’ in fear…
We met in Bucharest at Easter that year—
the way you wept-out secrets, couldn’t keep ’em
runnin’ from the beast your burden taunted you
not to wear—back there again, when I wouldn’t

repent, we said we’d never regret untrue
virtues, we wouldn’t pretend. And so instead,
I wrote sugar on the lips of dawn and sent
heaven a threat to let us kiss, lest devils
take the burden of my verbginity: “Read
my work and tell me if you really think you’ve

uncovered me.” No amount of pain can house
the guilt I felt when an angelic squadron
sapphired into my gaze, crystal conundrums
your tears couldn’t blunt. It was then, in that rain,
that the sky belted in clipped refrain: “Mortal,
have you enough anguish to be an artist?”

He whose face gives no light, shall never become
a star, knows well the soul’s arrogant poet;
so stumbling, I wandered into the dark hearth
our parting brandished me, where still I burn-out
the cotton-sweet shatter of torn memory,
wondering if your lips still yearn for my tongue.