The Moonlight Sonata
coaxes light through the window.
A warm glow is between us.
As our fire burns,
the air becomes ash laden,
we close our eyes.
Once when we could still see
there were hands between us,
one a teacup, the kind saved
for careful company,
the other a nesting bird
enveloping, gentle, weightless.
I could feel in your arms the
steel bands that hummed
with precision over a vast
network of machinery,
driving one day into the next.
The smell of heat hung on you,
white heat, blast furnace heat.
Skin seared to ochre, a badge,
a medallion, a sign of your time.
The heavy scent of oil, grease
and solvents hung around your
shoulders. Shoulders from
where I could see a world
shaped by the will of your vision,
the will of your back. Your black hair,
swept back by the wind or tide as
you leaned in to stand your ground
or go under for the third time.
There is the scent of leather,
smoke and grass, the chair
where I waited while you slept
slumped, heavy breath moist
warm on the back of my neck.
Our eyes open,
you speak, finally,
your voice is soft and hollow
the way mourning doves purr
as streetlamps go out.
All the sadness and regret is in your eyes
so your voice can carry across
the room to meet the music halfway.
I hold your hand like a teacup,
the taste of ash on my tongue,
grit in my eyes.
I wish for wind,
any expansion of air
so I can see light through the window
and feel again
the warm glow between us.