You Were At Your Best with Strings Attached

by Jerry Ratch


You were like a delicate lace

that barely mentions the wrist.

But you were also at your best

with strings attached.


Let me say this. If innocence

is supposed to be so overwhelming

as to do nothing on purpose,

not carried away by sensation,

godlike in appearance,

godlike in behavior,


then the very person causing such thirst

must not know how to quench it either.

Must not know the shadow and the doubt

behind the erotic.

Must not know how to shout in bedrooms

where such love is created.


But we weren't like that.

You were probably better at shaving your legs

than you were at spreading your wings.

And I was like that fabulous laughing bird

that whitens with age, like the little pilot light

of the living that goes out after smelling the moon.