Robert Rorabeck

Bronze Star - 2,193 Points (04/10/1978 / Berrien Springs)

By Your Very Flame - Poem by Robert Rorabeck

My heart, my heart:
What is it doing: it is dying into the emptiness
It expected you to be;
It is a day laborer mindless of the beauty of the deeper
Mangroves;
It is out cutting your lettuce, satcheling your citrus;
And it is a beautiful if curious world;
And cartoons rule it,
And sharks who cut their fins like paper cuts like
Middle-fingers into the air;
And I want to touch myself and wear what I cannot wear.
And what else do I want but to turn of the television while
You are still there,
Sharon, while you haven’t turned away to your paper families,
To the dolls you have erected from your own creation:
I wish for you to remember me,
And come to me as if a boy in a ballroom and really come
To me,
And touch me like something still in its cocoon, if you
Can still believe and hope for me in that way,
Then we can both leave the movie theatre together,
Holding hands and touching the bodies of our luggage together,
Helping me survive
When I have been drowning for a lucky seven years, hoping
For a girl like you to remember my name,
To reach out and keep my light kindled by your very flame.


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Poem Submitted: Monday, February 8, 2010



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