Skin Deep

From adventofreason’s Xanga Archives . . .

The Kiss (detail)  Gustav Klimt~The Kiss

he never could discern just what the flower
was that curved delicately down her hip bone
to her upper thigh and then disappeared
somewhere behind her knee, trailing
tendrils of green and lavender
she had told him once-was it lilac?
or something else-wisteria?
she had not been a delicate girl
her hair a ruddy red and a spray
of freckles across her body
her jaw was a bit too square and her
eyes tried to be green, but were
grey and smoky
her arms told of her strength and
she could drink most men under
the table, telling dirty jokes to make
a sailor blush
but that traveling flower down her
leg, from hip to knee always made
him see her as something ethereal
and dainty; how he loved to kiss that
purple ink, leaving a trail of moisture
on her pale skin
he would lie awake at night
alone in his narrow bed and wish that
he had learned to love more than
just that tattoo

ceg 11.2.11

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When the Sun Rises

From adventofreason’s Xanga Archives . . .

whenthesunrises

 

when you close your eyes
that is where you will find me
before dreams take you
you escape earth’s bonds
floating in and out of sleep
until you claim me
your nocturnal bride
bedecked in silvery stars
gliding on moonbeams
holding your heart dear
eyes filled with gentle longing
your name on my lips
no distance nor time
or the shackles of this earth
dare keep us apart
when the sun rises
we are drawn again earthward
spirits still entwined
ceg 7/21/11

When the Magic Died

From adventofreason’s Xanga Archives . . .

lastdays

The last days of magic were upon us. 

The trees no longer sang and the stars no longer whispered their secrets soft and low into our ears. The the divine goddesses whom we had worshiped for so long, had turned their golden faces from us and crushed our prayers beneath their heels.  We watched as the stars fell from the sky and the moon hung her head in misery.  Our tears left our faces wet and our eyes red with grief.  No longer the chosen.  No longer the loved.

One by one, we stood in silence, effigies of our previous lives.  The winds no longer moved our hair, but instead carved time upon our cheeks.  The flowers, denuded of their petaled poetry, turned their faces to the earth and the leaves once full of life, fell at our stony feet.

We stand, silent sentinels of a time when magic wove its way through our very veins.

ceg 10.1.11

Bugiardo and the Signorina

bugiardo2

Link to Part 1

I stared dumbly at the man, who before had seemed rather benign, but now appeared more sinister.  He leaned forward and reached for my hand, shaking it and introduced himself as Signore Bugiardo.  He then stood, bowed slightly and left without another word.  As I watched him depart, I was baffled, somewhat irritated and more than a little concerned. It was then that I realized that he had secreted a small piece of paper into my still-opened palm.

I had watched enough movies and read enough books to know better than to sit there and read the note.  I may be an amateur but I am not a stupid one.  I gently closed my hand over the note and continued gazing out the window, concentrating on acted interested in the view.  I counted to 100 tend times before rising and carefully making my way to the ladies’ room.  With practiced disinterest, I looked over the heads of the other passengers who were in various states of bored sleep.  Of the man, I saw no indication.

I opened the door to the lavatory that I would have never gone to if it weren’t for the note pressing itself into my hand.  I entered, put the seat down and sat.  Wasting no more time, I quickly opened the note.   In cramped writing I saw:

bugiardo

I stared at the note for a few minutes trying to fathom the implications of Bugiardo’s note, simultaneously memorizing every word, every nuance of it.  After a few moments, I returned the note to its former state and pushed it into my mouth.  With a grimace, then a cupped hand of water, I swallowed the note.  The short melodrama of the act amused me somewhat and when I caught my reflection, I saw a wry smile playing about my lips.  I quickly left the confining space and returned to my seat and resumed staring out the window.
Later, as I watched the train pull away from the station, Canada bound, I picked up my suitcase and asked the ticket agent about applying my refund towards a return ticket.  The man simply smiled and wordlessly handed me an envelope with my name written in a familiar hand.  Inside was a return ticket.  I looked at the ticket agent, who nodded.

“You have made the right decision, signorina.”

He turned away and I was left standing and staring at him before turning away myself to wait for my train.

Years later, sitting at a café with one of my few friends, we talked about trifling matters before she lit a cigarette and after a long pull, she commented on how I had changed after that trip that I had refused to speak of.  I asked her how she thought I had changed.  She mulled it over for a few long moments and then spoke carefully, looking at a place just beyond my shoulder.

“You seem more secretive now.  You rarely give straight answers to questions. I think of all the times I asked you about the time you left with little explanation and returned abruptly with even less of an explanation.  What happened?  Really.”

“Nothing,” I returned.  “I just changed my mind.”

“Bugiarda,” she replied, angrily stabbing her cigarette out.

With a start, I asked her what she had said.

“I called you a liar, cara mia.”

ceg 8.28.15