Today's poem is by Curtis Bauer

If This Is What It Takes

The knife in your hand wants flesh—

its appetite for blood is sharp steel

leaning, weeping into the tomato's meat,

sugar beets, steaming rhubarb pie—and hunts

that juice etching your hands, pulsing

your neck and shifting your hips. You

slice, you bleed, you leak into pools bubbling

the countertop, over the scuffed linoleum

to the stainless steel sink and anoint the potato

peelings, onion skins and apple rinds.

Make your salad before rot sets in

and that side of you that turns my head

after we've parted on the street

to watch your steps escapes. You come to me

squeezing your bleeding as if it were a gift,

as if the more you bled the better you'd feel

offering your invitation to join the thin red

sliver seething and throbbing your hands

into mine. Beautiful bleeder, my hands

never held holy powers until they entangled yours.

A blade, I understand its language. Give me

the knife and press its edge here. Pull.

Copyright © 2013 Curtis Bauer All rights reserved
from The Real Cause for Your Absence
C&R Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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