Friday, December 08, 2006

Poetry Friday: Ode to my spine

The Snake
by William Matthews

A snake is the love of a thumb
and forefinger.
Other times, an arm
that has swallowed a bicep.

The air behind this one
is like a knot
in a child’s shoelace
come undone
while you were blinking.

It is bearing something away.
What? What time
does the next snake leave?

This one’s tail is ravelling
into its burrow—
a rosary returned to a purse.
The snake is the last time your spine
could go anywhere alone.

*****

I love those last two lines so much, here they are again:

The snake is the last time your spine
could go anywhere alone.

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