They come visiting. They lay their coats down on the bed,
they put their gifts on the table in the hallway. In cellophane
—flowers, in paper bags—bottles, distillations of future meetings.
They pass around the dewy silver, porcelain, glass. In front of
the copper engravings of tropical birds, they peel themselves,
layer by layer, chattering. Even before the coming of the
late hour words are gnawed down to the bone. Beginnings
are used for various continuations, for selfish ends. Their anxiety,
like rising underground water, they cautiously fill with light.
Wounds glisten, say the surgeons. When, clothed in furry phrases,
they kiss each other on the cheek, somebody whispers:
the soul of the other—a moveable target.
Translated by Tom Preistly