One star, fifty bats and six gray-white swirls of cloud
against the coming black, fig darkness,
so ripe I want to peel it back and swallow,
skin and all.
Here, face to the sky, the singing dusk world
sapped of frog song, screaming geckos softly
muted with the pillowcase of pool water
close against my ears, I begin to forget—
Forget how you sound—even your
lilting accent from nowhere, everywhere,
the words you made up, even the slapping of
your long, flat feet against our tile floor;
Forget your face, the look of it, the feel
of the tight-bound curls both rough and
smooth to touch as I would run
my hands around its slim perimeter.
Would that with my consumption of this fig
night I could swallow the time between
us, devour the hours that have held us
suspended – so –
to blow back into our lives
the scope of a year in our youth,
when each week spread like spring
branches of some ancient oak.
Better than this: our aging deflates days so each
and closely held,
like some night-sprung flower—
so sweet it smells, so soon it dies.
If such are the days remaining,
I long only for you
to fly back with the bats and float
with me in this mute dusk,
breathe life into memories gone to dust.
And when the dark comes we will inhale it,
seeds and skin and fruit and
an ever-turning future.