Tim Lockridge

In Florence you stood before
the Academy and opened
your arms like a fault
line. I kissed your cheek

like a sculptor, imagined
the moment stone becomes
statue and around us buildings
crumbled. Beautiful,

you said, so I brushed
the dust from your bangs.
It was a cinder sunset
when we laid down a blanket

and unpacked a basket
you found in the weeds.
Gypsies sang and trains
clanged away the soft

spots of conversation,
so I never heard you
say we should leave before
day dissipates. I couldn't

separate light from ash,
but you said the night
is huge and our arms
are stars and always

desiring more. I thought
long on this, waited
for the whir of a taxi.
Headlights pierced

the dusk and painted
you the most desirable
pitch of brown. My heart
is a wolf, you sighed.

The door closed and we knew
the cold teeth of the night.






I find Michelangelo's unfinished Prisoners to be compelling works of art, but I also realize that dropping Florence/Michelangelo/the Accademia Di Belle Arti Di Firenze into a poem's first stanza creates certain assumptions and expectations. Hence the destruction.