I lent you
weak-spined paperback books, coins for your bus fare home,
the defenselessness of my body in late September, eager
silhouettes playing against peeling paint and dying light.
You lent me
halves of your sandwiches, chronicles from childhood,
the nape of your neck where I would trace my name
with my lips to make you appear more real
to me, more conscious.
I liked to imagine
shaping you with my palms
like some sort of maniacal artist.
As if you were my pottery, my life’s work,
that I could shape you however I saw fit,
keeping you on the wheel
to be governed by my movements.
But the body is not clay nor soulless.
It cannot spin forever.
It does not defy inertia.
With you I learned
that the body is only lent in intervals
and then taken back after it is due.
I thought I’d have my whole life
to sculpt you without flaw, but you,
my almost magnum opus,
are my holy unfinished.