Saturday, August 17, 2013

Michael Waters: "The Inarticulate"

Touching your face, I am like a boy
who bags groceries, mindless on Saturday,
jumbling cans of wax beans and condensed milk

among frozen meats, the ribboned beef
and chops like maps of continental drift,
extremes of weather and hemisphere,

egg carton perched like a Napoleonic hat,
till he touches something awakened by water,
a soothing skin, eggplant or melon or cool snow pea,

and he pauses, turning it in his hand,
this announcement of color, purple or green,
the raucous rills of the aisles overflowing,

and by now the shopper is staring
when the check-out lady turns and says,
“Jimmy, is anything the matter?”

Touching your face, I am like that boy
brought back to his body, steeped
in the moment, fulfilled but unable to speak.

"The Inarticulate" by Michael Waters, from Parthenopi: New and Selected Poems. © BOA Editions, 2001.

Image credit: "A picture of Angelina," pencil drawing by artistrunning (originally black and white).

No comments :

Post a Comment

Thank you for participating respectfully in this blog's community of readers.