first, body

The scar is blue-black, ink stained
into her skin. He holds her wrist like paper
thin parchment, rubs his thumb over the
kanji as if feeling for a pulse, and says
tell me about this one.
She does not name it; she knows he can see
the vertical mark running up her vein.
She tells him it was her fifth, and took
the longest to heal; the wound scabbed
twice before the skin accepted it
as part of her body.

She watches him in the soft light,
standing before her without a shirt, sleeved
in kaleidoscopic colour. She imagines
his sun against her tree, her ankh against
his krishna, the canvas of their bodies
a landscape of hollows, flesh and bone, light
and dark, blood brain heart.
Touching his shoulder blade gently, now
she will ask and he will answer
reading the map of each other’s body
this is how they begin.

 

Originally published in Copper Nickel

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