Orphan Prayer II

orphan prayer

She raises her lips, a question

cresting the shadowed-sun crease

of her mouth, and though my arms loop

her in, unfolded prayer in the press

of warm skin and fraying cloth,

I see the wanting

that’s never found its legs, hear

the pull and snap of sutured sorrows

brawling for song in her throat.

I wonder how far down the yearning

trembles, where the first break

is a shuttered memory, leaking

a midnight hope, and how many seeds

the spirit scatters when displaced

by a desperate love.

And yet her body hums,


and I accept

her offering,

still unspoken,

giving my lips

to her kiss.