(back to Bode
     Hall home)


Forgive me Father, for I have sinned.
It's been eight years since I yanked
your cable coldly from my midsection;
nine since you gave me a stone and I
stole our bread; ten since the knife.

Eleven since your earlier confession.

You remember that one, yes?  When we
sat on the porch together with beers,
and you squinted up at the darkening
sky, whispering that you always knew,
wishing you'd never married that one?

I guess you forgot where I came from.

Here's one for your ears now, listen,
so long I have withheld my brightest
spark and kept my full flames banked
to live off the reflected shine from
dim remembered lovers' lidded smiles.

Their sighs can almost drown you out.

Look at me one solid moment, damn it!
You dare not sign only those strokes
that meet approval; no, these others
are yours too; can't you see, here's
another telltale cut showing through.

So many broken goods you've sloughed.

You'll never hear how bodies enchant
me, you who never had a kind word to
say about bodies.  You'll never weep
for the mounds of pleasure I've sold
to buy back my pain from your coffer.

Had I the balls to steal it, I would.

-skyler, June 1999