Time is tender against our skin;
hours gently droop across your shoulders.
Moment to moment I taste your cheeks
and chin and nose, so close to mine.
Time indulges our eyes, letting them
study in silence the other’s, finding
flecks and flaws like volcanic diamonds.

I am lucky to spend such a span of hours
whispering into your fingers with mine.
You speak chapter and verse
with thin digits against my wrist.
You draw my hand to your side, and I
remark with probing fingers, it is
I whose ribs are missing.
Your fingers are cold as you touch my chest,
and keep them there, still, as though
a movement would render the moment null.

We speak a language of our devising,
staying still against a passing night.
And time, still, has not comprehended
our trick of stepping sideways
through the minutes rushing by.