To be loved that much.
Wrapped in white thread
becalmed with strange brew
given to keep him still,
he receives her
and so ends the struggle to live.
She holds the cocoon
that holds his yellow striped back,
keeps his black sting from tearing
apart her world.
She holds his body
in her own sun and moon embrace.
She enters gently,
grateful for this lover
who comes after the long harlot wait
at the open window.
The red light of the late afternoon sun
illuminates her long slender legs,
the way they shimmer
shameless with sleek dark hair.
This could be a certain district in Amsterdam
rather than mountain certain Western North Carolina.
Or like women in the ancient temples, how she welcomes all
who come bearing gifts for a taste of the dark interiors.
When morning comes, he is still and silent.
Her legs like arms reach around him.
Her mouth opens again and again.
Ignoring all but who has entered her bed,
she loves him long past the dawn
then releases his husk to the cool earth.
She makes her bed, spreads the pale threads smooth
and tidy for the next guest’s pleasure.
Taking her place in the center, she waits.