shadows

Charlotte Mabe

the shadows love the ripples in stone
like the close curves of a riverbed
that hugs the breath of water passing by:
this is the reason for tree limbs who climb
up the sides of the wall from across the way
and draw on a canvas meant to keep separate
the outside from the in.

the star lover and the star
will never have a conversation beyond
light years overcome in sore necks
that over the centuries have grown;
evolved to stand perpendicular to the ground,
shifting upwards while the star dust sifts outward–
molecules lost on a suicide mission.

my tongue lies waiting for you,
to find the words in your mouth
you could not speak into being;
it is dangerous how much i want to discover,
to seek out, to lure and coax with soft spoken
tumbling thoughts—and perhaps more so
dangerous that you allow yourself to be led,
blindfolded, into the cave of my heart.

there are steps into the interior,
smoothed with the grooves
of the footfall of those who have come before—
their shadows corrugated across the ascension
the friction sanding the soles,
the sacred refuge promising a destination
and the departure from a place to return to
when we no longer need these walls
to keep the shadows out.

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