Tag Archives: beauty

Sinking

How easily
the sunlit beauty
of the day
goes dark
when tainted
with words
that are not
lovely
and bright
like the call
of the wood thrush
in the trees
along the river—
words that
do not flow in
and out of me
smoothly
the way
this narrow boat
travels
mindlessly
on its course—
words
that do not
float pleasantly
around me
like I love you—
and I’m sure
he wishes
he could
tell me anything
without fear
of me
going under—
just as I wish
his fondness
for her
didn’t
have the power
to sink me.

 

 

 

 

DeMaris
7-16-17

Just Below the Surface

In a parallel universe
or on a future day, perhaps,
I’d like to tell you how much
I’ve loved the ones
who came before you—
maybe sit down at the table
with the shoebox
full of love letters
you know nothing about
and rifle through my history
of loss that made our love
possible—
and I think it would be
kind of liberating
to hear your stories too
and invite our hearts
to be broken one more time
while I talk about Walter
and that wonderful winter
we spent in Duluth
and you could talk about Rose
and how you still
worry about her even though
she canceled the wedding
and moved back home to Israel—
and for just one afternoon
we wouldn’t have to pretend
that certain names never
float to the surface
of our memory
or that we wouldn’t love
to run into them again
while we were alone
in some cozy café
with nothing more urgent
than our wish
to hear where their life has gone
since that day we were
no longer part of it.

 

 

 

DeMaris Gaunt
11-27-15

Photograph

 

It feels like I’ve said
almost everything I can
about the way I love you—
the way it feels warm to have you
in the center of my heart—
and how happy I am to wake up
next to that smile of yours
even if it’s just a picture of us
together on our happiest day
being silly and reckless
somewhere in the middle of our lives
which were never
supposed to converge like this
in the middle of nowhere—
and when I took that photo
deep in the woods, my right arm
wrapped tightly around you,
I wasn’t thinking
about the past or the future—
or the ethics of our union.
I wasn’t thinking that one day
I’d need to explain
what I was doing there with you—
that no one else would see what I see
in that joyful photograph—
all the love, beauty, bravery
and restoration—
the depth of feeling
words are powerless to express
or deny.

 

 

 

DeMaris
3-6-17

 

In the Woods

I knew
I had to memorize
the way it felt
for you to help me
untuck your shirt
so I could thread my arms
around your waist—
my open hands
reading the smooth
braille of your skin—
and I found a warmth
so tender I shivered
to think such a heat
extended into parts
of you I’d never find
or feel—
and the sycamores
along the river
were the only trees
to take an interest
in our bittersweet union
because they lived
unapologetically
with their white skin
glowing and exposed
and they couldn’t
understand our layers
or why we thought
we had so much to hide.

 

 

 

 

DeMaris
1-4-17

 

 

 

Selection Process

To you, girls like me
are a dime a dozen.
We step into your field
of wildflowers hoping
not to blend in—
hoping you’ll notice
something beautiful
in the way we stand
or sway or weather
the unforgiving sun—
that fire we pray will not
wither our uniquness
before you stop
and kneel down beside us
with your garden sheers
to make your difficult
and final choice.

 

 

DeMaris
12-27-16

Beauty

“If you truly love nature,
you will find beauty everywhere.”
~Vincent van Gogh

Forget about the wild blue phlox
and the evergreens with the little nests
tucked neatly into their branches.
No one is denying the involuntary awe
drawn out of us by canyons so grand
they are lined with the history of the earth.
But what of the other nature—
the one equally inexplicable in its ability
to blossom and startle and endure?
This one is softer than the cotton sheets
that cover it in the night, more dangerous
than the red hot center of a volcano,
and as vicious as a territorial wolf
who guards his den.  Is this beauty?
When something like love pushes you
to those edges you could so easily
step off of, is this beauty?  I say yes—
and that edges are often where we find it.

 

 

DeMaris
12-11-16

Painting by Wendell Minor