A recluse alchemist magician
confined in the cold custody
of this wheeled chair to weave
words, alloy rust, and silence,
I have been warned by death
masks and their knocking as if
the demise of everyday misery,
my nudging boredom, scares.

How can I tell that story about
the excited fever of fingertips
without the clickable friction
of the flickering flare, the hint
of the drunken bonfire dancing
on the nude quivering of skins
and bones before the drizzle,
the quiet of deadened embers?

How can I describe the breath
steaming on a scented nape
before the turning of a cheek
without the heated glass pipe
obedient to the inaudible lips
and meek to the slow wetting
of the tongue craving for salt,
the caustic taste of fat smoke?

How can I illustrate these to you,
the quick moments of melting,
the weak movements of thighs
arching over curves to settle,
the slouching of drained arms,
and the satisfied smiles sweaty
and unfolding on strange faces,
without the crystals that burn?

How can I write a tale, about
the bare tiptoes of the night
and the subtlety of its begging
boiling underneath the linen,
without the powder blackness
of the soot smudging on nails
as a residue and on palms as
grime of whiffs and inhaling?

Without the billowing clouds,
I cannot dream of summer rain,
the curling peels of tangerines,
their seeds in my playful mouth,
the juice dripping off my chin,
the mutating memory of shapes,
the soft solids, and the viscosity
of fluids before their evaporation.