close carry

i used to fall asleep in the car,

riding home at night after a

 

long outing. i remember the hum

of the road, the flashing head

 

lamps; i remember the sudden quiet

of the engine cutting off, daddy scooping

 

me up in his arms to carry me in. some

times a shoe would slip, a mumble, a word—

 

a hint that i wasn’t completely asleep;

but he would carry me up the stairs into

 

the house, up the stairs into my bed.

i don’t remember what was said: just

 

the strong arms around me, the

scent of man, of capability, of love.

 

later there would be times i would try

to recreate this safe feeling, this

 

extended touch, this close carry.

but it was never the same.

 

love to you and

the way you hold a

pencil,     the way you bend and tilt

 

toward what is important, toward

what moves you     and yet holds

 

you in stilled animation,

wonder,     desire;

 

the way your face      opens

to the widest smile, the

 

bluest

laugh,          like music

 

giving in.     love to you and

the granular tender-

 

ness in your eyes, on your

finger   tips, between the     universe

 

of your lips,     the tension of your sighs. this

kind of     love     has no name; it is just a

 

grate   ful   ness to be in the

same world with      you.