They would be tittering together now
with their horrid bodies close,
their arms and legs and throats
as brown as berries.
She too wants me to catch hold of her.
I could hold her and kiss her, he thought–
put her straight-haired, heavy head
on my shoulder, brave enough at last
to hold her cold hand in its glove.
The lank brown horses knew it
and shook their bells, anchored among
the hulks of houses and the snow man
with the broken back collapsed.
Her chest moved up and down.
Her rough body, bottle-legs,
grew from a few words.
Laughing from the shelter of the chapel
into the darkness, this heretic
with his hand on her breast
opened his eyes with a nervous impulse,
saw the town in a daze spin by them.
There was never a young lover
who didn’t love the moon, they said,
pecking each other like gulls in the air,
dirty as Christ knows what.