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(for T)

by Jenny Mueller

I want I want I want: that's the bare
shivering inside her rhetoric. I want
to touch her, through the glass of air.

Red nails red lips red hair. Her metawear:
cherry construction-paper heart that beats
sweet ripe sweet ripe, and then the bare

stone of self-advertisement. Sister,
I know your sign, the wound...
To touch her through the glass of air

would be transgression, though I love her
in her loneliness, prism'd in analysis
(therefore therefore therefore, as if the bare

facts could be talked into something more
special), untranslatable as this: She wants
someone to touch her.
Through the glass of air

she sees the world flown clear
of her reflection, though her mind beats out: it hurts
it hurts. Sweet heart, I know. To bear
touching her, through the glass of air.

Jenny Mueller writes for NewCity, a weekly newspaper in Chicago. Her work has appeared in Best American Poetry 1994.

Copyright © 1995 by The Atlantic Monthly Company. All rights reserved.
The Atlantic Monthly; June 1995; Love Poem; Volume 275, No. 6; page 78.

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