Oliver Roberts

Rookie (June 7,1979 / South Africa)

Solstice - Poem by Oliver Roberts

Midnight sun rides your breath,
cold yellow air,
the sound of souls splitting.
Ice on the windowsill,
it won't melt
not even in this endless sunshine.
I’m bruised.
Just here on my neck,
bruised by you.
The wall heater hums
creaks and hums, expanding.
The paint around it discolours.
White world,
watery sky frosting the treetops.
Hundreds of owls
sitting inside the branches,
haunted by months of sleep,
eyes frozen shut by silence.
Silence stretching like a scream,
your heart here on my chest.
I feel it beating, slowly


into me. Your heart
is beating into me.
I touch your hair,
stroke its infant warmth,
every strand.
I have waited so long for this.
To hold you like this,
to smell you like this,
to be surrounded by you like this.
The bedside table and a glass of water,
lipstick smudge on the rim.
Water glistening in the sighing sun.
Your kisses floating inside,
swirling, settling like light snow.
Your face.
Your eyes closed.
Lips half parted,
some teeth just showing.
We are stuck in this room together.
We are stuck together in this room.
Stuck together like stars and rain.
The humming of the heater. The discoloured paint.
You holding me. You smell like you always smell
when you sleep. The murdered perfume,
the conquering mix of our sweat.
I want to talk to you. Wake up. Wake.
I want to tell you what I’m seeing.
I want to tell you about the shadows on your arms.
I want to tell you how I drank some of your lost kisses.
I am so tired.
Wake up so I can turn you over.
I want to see
what your other side looks like in this light.
I want to know
if your other side tastes the same.
There’s a whole other universe here.
So warm, warm, warm.
Your creeping curvatures
dip and reach so I touch them.
Gently touch them, feel the teeth marks
just here.
And here.
Kiss. Heal you. Heal me.

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Poem Submitted: Monday, July 31, 2006

Poem Edited: Friday, August 20, 2010

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