There’s any number of archaeological wonders
hogging my blankets each morning;
plaster Pompeii casts of the scratch of your beard
on my back, or our hopeful replicas of the kissing Hasanlu lovers.
I collect these skeletons before you wake,
each new umbrous statue of you like
a reiterating mewl or clang or drip or tick
of some broken appliance, a faucet, a clock.
It’s a sort of hoarder’s neurosis to catch delight in these
but I like the loud drip or clack or hiss of what I have,
the clock, an A.C. unit, the announcement
of the coffee pot, our pairs arranged on secret shelves
like salt-and-pepper shaker sets, ceramic and steel
or glass and waxy, the one with the suns or pursed lips
or the wet hair and bonfire smoke. How many effigies
make a shrine? I don’t mind crowding them into the dust.
This is what I have, a kind of faith;
Our sheet-wrapped and shut-eyed doppelgängers,
today’s bodies and yesterday’s strangers.
I’ve gathered, too, the bones of the old woman
who pointed her long finger to the sky, said,
look, don’t worry; there he is, there he is, there he is.