Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Totem





The dalmatian-spotted cat
balances a candle
on her tail
and looks up
listening to swallows
as they build their nest
in the chimney.

Because of those birds,
I cannot light a fire
on cold days
but let the heat
of a scented taper
mesmerize the room
instead. A slow
burning mark
of exclamation-- it
emphasizes
bitter orange blossom
and the loneliness
I feel in your absence.

The feline guards our hearth.
She's all totem now,
a figurine bought
from some boutique
in San Fransisco.
And in her inanimate way
she understands
my need for a pulse,
wing beat, flame nod
or sun flash lending
movement to the mirror --

your breath galvanized
warming the glass
as we both hum a tune,
same love song, same hour
but you
in that distant city
leaning back
on its hillside haunches.
________________________________________

The painting is called, "Chat en Grece" by artist, Hans Silvester.