Poetic Aspirations Two.

Bathsheba’s Bath.

Are we building a temple, you and I?

As we lie like broken lambs,

Or cracked pieces of the host, floating,

At the edges of the chalice:

soggy with wine.


The electric light casts an unpleasant sheen

On the bathwater, illuminating the gritty evidence:

small brown curls,

And dust on the rim. We pull

The shower curtain across,

Making shadows to hide in,

So if I close my eyes I might believe

We were in other people’s lives.


The tangle of my hair seeps around you,

The pillowy flesh of your crotch drifting

Near my ears. The water is too hot

And my legs extend above the tap,

As if hung on a hook,

the bubbles drying out to white residue

like spiderwebs.


All sensitivity slowly recedes.

The burning toes cool as the fleeing blood

Drains away, and my fingers, like a statues,

drip water from their tips.

There is a moment when the bulbous tug

Of the teardrop quivers against inevitability,

And I can see world through its unique

Looking-glass; the teal of the curtain, the yellowing



The taps are reflected in them,

Silver and burning against me

whilst we lie,

Naked, and unafraid before

the blanch of steam and raw element.

Your skin seems to float around me like

Fat on oil, loose and lifeless.

In this stewed pot of hair and bones,

I wonder where you are,

What part of you I might keep,

Or find, if I boiled us away

to stock.


The water cools but I have

Lost the feeling

in my feet, and cannot                

get out.





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