Surely there must be a way… /…to dwell without/rancor or remorse in moments when I /might press my face against your nape/to catch that drifting note—/unnameable, unmistakable, stirring/even my sorrows into fragrance.


It is the way of beauty and of virtue you require,
the canon forgotten in our striving for the wind.

Come hither, anyway, hide your pain in the cup
of my hands, find that reprieve from a judgment

of endlessly inchoate loving, and let your heart
rest from its ceaseless running. Escape stops here.

Should I then pledge fealty to being your gaoler?
Should I find you an open cage to freely return to?

But these will only be tethers that must bind you
when all you pray for is to be loved and unafraid.

Now, therefore, with all my courage, and all
that I can grant, I absolve you from this price

of laying your life down for the countless kisses
you have given and not taken any in return.

—Albert B. Casuga