every animal has its own way
of writing its name. humans build
towers to poke holes in the sky.
horses run the length of a field--
leaving hoof-prints in fresh mud.
bees scoop up pollen--taking yellow
into their small hands & searching
for flowers that remind them
most of their mothers. bowing to a breeze.
pollen coated the outside of my car
on the last days i saw you. you drew
a heart in the dust. we blinked
future fruit from our eyes.
drank sodas in the front seat
with the windows shut. you talked
like only deer do. ready to run
deep into wooded curtains. your eyes
like signatures. ink whirling
all the way to bone. i used to practice
writing my name on napkins & notebook paper.
that was before i discovered my mouth.
planting my name on your neck.
you said you were growing
a family of potted plants. i imagined
being the father of plum trees
with you. there was enough sugar
to keep our wants caramel & dripping.
dew spitting letters onto my canvas shoes.
everything was damp. i never used
the extra closet space. simply filled it
with empty boxes. names upon names.
the backyard where you asked
if i had a space ship anywhere.
sighed & said, "not yet."
the bees hovered, watching.
re-collecting their pollen. asking
if you were their mother. inside
before you left, you drew a portrait of me
using only forks. i asked, "am i smiling?"
you said, "only if you want be."
i find your name still in crossword puzzles
& written in pollen on my desk.
a single bee the keeper of my regrets.
is a name a capsule or a lectern?
you road a sun beam back
to before i knew you.