Lauren Camp



He is wearing slippers when it begins.
The adulterer raises a wine glass and swirls.
Neither blackberry nor oak.
Not balanced nor buttery.
He has eight bottles in a bag in the back of his car.
The adulterer does his work at a PC.
His body is cold: the peeled-back contrast
between what is savory and what is only dying.
What he writes late at night is will you give me.
What he writes is grief, punctuation, long vowels.
He writes dishonest branches.
Keeps his hands on the shadow.
The adulterer writes the split infinitive,
writes what spills from the corners of his head.
He writes the thick, soft taste
of what he would like to taste.
He writes through the postures of moon.
The adulterer doesn’t know the difference
between prayer and shudder.
He makes himself man of the moment
and speeds through the big book of anatomy:
from backyard to sticky white ocean.
From him we learn how the single gauze
of what you have can lapse.
We learn the flavor of pursuit.
He leaves his reverberating language in an inbox.
Don’t hoard the notes. Don’t let the mind
demand more. We must take ourselves away,
so the heart can pursue us.
His wife in their four-poster bed
breathes her soft slow wings of night.
LAUREN CAMP is the author of This Business of Wisdom (West End Press). Her second collection, The Dailiness, will be published in 2014. She hosts “Audio Saucepan,” a global music/poetry program on Santa Fe Public Radio, and writes the poetry blog, Which Silk Shirt.

Read more by Lauren Camp:

Author website
Poem at Sweet