Michele Amas


wait     no, wait
on the back of an envelope, instructions
a square veggie plot at the back
hydrangeas on the left, a rock
beneath the long narrow Cyprus tree
under the rock a cough lolly tin
inside the tin, a key
wait     no, wait
returning to her side and the eyes
of men and the legs of a maiden aunt
on a screen her shy and blushing
vascular system, tubulous
tunnels of rose-root
beneath the water table of her skin
returning to watch her plunge
legs turned mermaids tail or tadpole
to whisper let me undo your hair
is that not like a breath
the beauty of ribbon, the clasp of kelp
on a hospital pillow
returning the key to the cough lolly tin
I think of the age of the cough
and cakes of birthday soap
between sheets in a linen cupboard
a hairbrush in my hand
in the back of a taxi.

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