Lover’s Psalm

Goeth I, on bare feet, to the liquor store across the street
while you bend over your notebooks and mysteries,
bent like a lover,
bent like a tree branch (willow, gnarled, see also descriptions and metaphors
for trees)
You never go outside, instead you pale
in the dark of our basement apartment
I wait for you to glow
a bioluminescent fish who never sees the sun
you blink behind thick glasses when I turn on the lights,
as if seeing is painful
You have a well-crafted rabbinical look, though you have never studied,
and you do not correct people who incorrectly assume
I tell my friends
You have not read your book on Kabbalah
You quickly abandoned your Hebrew for Beginners course
I tell them how you have:
lied to me to about your essence,
are playing at non-existent obsession,
how your parents are secular humanists and number theory escapes you
how I love you anyways
And I respect the way you follow through on a pick up line so thoroughly

Goeth I, on bare knees, from the chair to the couch
to eel my way into your arms
curved around your notebooks and mysteries,
curved like a mother’s arms
curved like a lens (convex, smooth, see also descriptions and
metaphors for magnification)
I upset pages where you have written
incorrect functions and equations over and over again (you are terrible at math and
and the candles you insist upon catch the corner of a single sheet
When I suggest that perhaps G*d will see it as a burnt offering
When I reference passages that were blood-drenched, serving up meat and fire
You tell me I have no right to say His name
and you sleep on the couch for days in the same clothes
At first I admire the way you so thoroughly commit to being offended,
but in the end I just want you to shower
Instead of making up, we argue
about how you know less about the tribes of Israel than I do
about Naomi and Ruth, yoked by a man, bending like all the wheat they
about Jezebel, Dinah, and David’s tender virgin, whose name you
can’t recall (Abishag.)
All these women, yoked by men, I say
we used to be knives
holy fire
put out by salt and sermon
I have my days as a pastor’s daughter (long skirts, holy gibberish, sweating through sermons)
with which to bait you
until you gather my hair in one hand like a thin sheaf of wheat
and call me a gentile, erect for the first time in months

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