Perhaps because I know how salt
is paired with flame and flame’s a welt
that licks the skin with thorn and bone,
I’ve always loved what knows to fold
the piquant tendril in the sweet—
ginger with anise, torn basil with lemon,
the iron bite of bitter gourds lingering
long after summer berries have left
their juice and stain on fingers, lips.
Reptile-skinned melons blush orange
like daylilies at their core, and the moon’s
poor copper in exchange. Once, I spooned
a tincture of jasmine flowers and my mouth
transformed into an old cathedral
against whose rose-veined marble walls
sheets of candle smoke lifted, swirled.
Once, I slipped thin slices of the carambola
on my love’s tongue, so he could understand
how some stars burn greener in their
passing. Shake the purple rind of the grenadilla,
the yellow globe of the maracuyá— the audible pulse,
the ticking seeds: exquisite sweet, waiting to explode.
In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.