Rosamund, Rosemont, Reckless, Rosebud
i.
Black crows in the icy parking lots of early morning
and coffee spilt down our lips like drool.
The ice is rotting, a consistently too bright distraction

and we have learned to read ourselves to sleep
with Victorian novels and dream of abduction as though
our mother had not warned us against the dangers of a man in love.

We wear costume diamond rings and opulent rhinestone chokers
on the tundra of the freeways, somewhere east of midnight
and morning when the highway is deserted with all but our laughter.

ii.
Rosamund is ravenous and vague in her impressionism.
Her study in surrealism is the mapping of the freckles on her face.

iii.
The bed is white linen, and we are deep under the coverlet chuckling at the echoes encroaching downward, streetlight languid, a sleepy sepia of childhood, the antique bassinette where the newly born kittens mew and yawn; great grandmother in Nebraska where the cyclones tore through the house often leaving hay deep inside the piano – the sound, persistently off key.

iv.
When she was younger she felt like mockery,
every action inactive,
the ironic sigh,
the illiterate laziness of eyeballs
and poems that will not be written.

She always wanted to be married first.
In love first.

Sucking the dark marrow from the corners of her cupped hands, running cold water over the fountains, or writing haiku's in the park.

v.
When falling asleep in a car, someone should always kiss your forehead to keep bad dreams at bay.

vi.
She tells me that there is pain at first,
a harsh high,
eyes narrow,
held breath,
awkward movement.

Men are loud, she says,
that is, if they are not quiet.

vii.
Even if we were on the slopes of cityscapes
we would still indulge ourselves in homily activity,
still tie our hair into curlers
and sleep in disjointed enjambment.
Our toes would still touch,
the colder of the two more adept at twisting with the warmer ones.

Secrets would still be whispered lyrics,
stuck in our heads like songs.

viii.
Purple is a strange hue, she says between swallows, her jaw hurts, but the shading is so pretty against her skin tone.

ix.
There is miscalculation on the matriculation of family dynasties.
Miscommunication of prodigal daughters,

the constant next in line,
the runner up,
the prettier,
the clever one.

The fear of bare feet on gravel,
dog-walking.

The bark of strange boys, or lone wolves baying at the chalky moon.

x.
There is an end to civilization, she says in the husky humid nights,

everything has an end,
unless it becomes a knot,
and no one likes a knot.

She is in midnight mourning,
and I am all pearls and harmonicas.

She has let herself be abducted, but she's come back to us. Well educated in the boldness of things. The edge of her stomach becomes tight, a knot, love note, all for naught.