Vowels and Other Letters

I really love this one. It’s a cracker, as a lovely reader and poet once said.




He tests her name out
on his lips,
rolls the letters around
in his mouth.
He likes the feel
of the vowels
and consonants
sliding over his tongue
like liquid sound.
It’s dangerous
to love her,
to picture
the subtle curve
of her cheek,
the gentle slope
of her nose.
He pushes her away
at the moment
he learns the manner
of her laugh,
the magnitude
of her gestures.
She is not his.
She is
air and
freedom and
But she is not his.
He still whispers
her name,
forbidden and
and his lips curl up,
grace turning his mouth
(filled with the letters that make her)
into a smile,
mixed with
she is not his.

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