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Solo Duets (poem)

Autumn blazed azure and gold,

And a tickling thrill stole over me;

Fingers slid down the curve of my neck,

Then gently squeezed my clavicle,

Playing me for a brilliant fool.

I swayed into his embrace;

Bronze, copper, and iron notes

Skittered down and up my spine,

In senseless musicality.

Yellow squeaked cautionless F sharp,

Red “Don’t Walk” banged my brain to go,

To ignore a car screeching green;

My metronome life—ONE-two-three,

ONE-two-three—fell out of box step.

He whirled me, my head tipping back,

And our tango strayed night into day—

Running down the clocks.

His sweaty hand caught my raised wrist,

And I faced him, fighting for breath,

Dry lips parted, I drew closer,

Lured by a straining violin;

I kicked up dust from heart-pine boards

And wrapped my leg around his thigh,

Blood-rush dips intoxicated,

But his grip slackened, and I crashed,

A sprawling dime-a-dance girl.

He hibernated until

Forsythia stars exploded and

Tight cylinders of hyacinth

Rose brief and creamy, craving light.

He flirtatiously slipped his foot

Just inside the slam of my door,

And his shoes drummed frenetically—

An ancient tamburello shook.

He knelt briefly, galloped three steps,

His right arm feigned steadiness,

But his left foot forward tripped me;

Pawing his left hand, he gamboled

Three steps ahead, turn, sprang, and bit.

The sting of ritual poison

Sent spasmodic waves up my legs

In hypnotic 6/8 rhythm,

A pizzica tarantata—

This foggy duet roiled nowhere,

Until a repeat Middle C,

Neither sharp, nor flat,

Marched me out the door slam,

A steady one-note wonder,

As mop-headed hydrangeas—

Summer seared—pelted the lawn blue.


Categories: Poetry

Tagged as:

Catherine Hamrick

Soul deep storyteller, poet, copywriter, and editor with a passion for wordplay, gardens and literature

5 replies

  1. You have never, never written more beautifully. I trust that you will submit it widely, starting at the top.

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