• Vol. 04
  • Chapter 10

Formalist Affair

Your door, your window,
always shuttered—
I stand before that window,
that door, and imagine
my entrance into your silkscreen
world, a universe of formalist
perfection: each line, each
curve, perfectly wrought.

But perfection has rough edges.
The paper’s grain, the way the ink
soaks into it, the uneven spot,
the traces of variable pressure
or scant ink—all these off-kilter
elements evoke love, the care
we take to trace the curve
of a lover’s mottled hip and thigh
or the delicate rise of a mole
on the sleek surface of a lover’s bicep.

Here is the gate through which desire
rushes, unshutters that window,
swings open that long-shut
door, and then knocks over
that perfect vase. It shatters
on the lintel, scatters a thousand
fragments, blue and white
and gold, across your entryway.


Formalist Affair

You emerge from an interior
room deep within your lair and we
bend together and gather up
the pieces to create a mosaic—
yes, perfect!—of our love.