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You and I, we meet in words.
It is the language that bridges us.

You say pleased, I say pleasure.
Our hands shake.

You say velvet.  I breathe deeply.
I say cobalt.  Your eyes widen.

Whiskey; thumbtack; Lakota.  You tap your foot.
Tunkasila; bootstrap; harness.  I clear my throat.

I say nimbus; cornflower.  Your right hand scratches your collarbone.
You say blue spruce; stretching.  My arms unfold themselves.

I say linen; leather; suede.  You reach for my hand.
You say conjure; mist; fathom.  I raise my chin.

I say darkened plum.  Your blood pulses in your jaw.
You say candy apple red.  I lick my lips.

Rosebud; Wounded Knee; prayer book.  I lower my eyes.
Sweetgrass; silver; violin. You lean into me.

Butterscotch; anisette; almond oil.  I pivot my hip.
Flame; lightning; braided.  You taste the corner of my mouth.

I close my eyes.

You slide against me.

We both exhale.

We both ache.

We both forget.

© 2004 Dora E. McQuaid
After Sundance on Rosebud Indian Reservation, South Dakota

All peace to each one of you today. Dora

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