Friday, February 26, 2016


Artist Unknown, "The Gopis Plead with Krishna
to Return Their Clothing
," The Metropolitan
Museum of Art

Long ago, I wrote a poem about your blue-
black skin; in it, your back was crosshatched
with scars, as if you’d been beaten, whipped
until half-dead, dying. That was ages, eons
before I knew your name, before I knew my
name, before pale laughing milkmaids told
stories about that time you hid their clothes
as they swam in the river. Now that we know
each other in most all our disguises, take joy
in each other’s unbroken dance, those scars
have become a calligraphy, something I can
read you by with my fingertips, with my heart—
even in the dark, an illuminated manuscript.

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