January 1998 / Volume One / Issue One
NOTE: This poem is divided into 2 parts. Click the ">" at the end of the page to access the next.
Alice Cone
Forming the Muse

First she took her fingernail
to his thigh, peeled
some scraps of tallow, melted
them down with her red-hot
hands, caressed and stretched
the wax so long
she fashioned his form.
She molded the torso, curved
immaculate limbs.
The she slithered
inside, filling
fingertips, cock and toes
with quickly solidifying mettle.
Soon she turned dark
and lean, living flush
against his leather, cheeks
flaring, with people drawn
to her, the way they are drawn
to him, the way they are pulled
to yellow moonshine, tipped open.
Now his tattoos are embossed
on her chest; now she regards
the world with his eyes.

When she spots a blonde-- tangled hair
whisking against the minced waist,
little feet clipping perfectly
along-- or a dark-haired orb of a girl
bending inside a snug skirt
to retrieve some keys
from the pavement, she is
mesmerized.  She only wants
what clenching-hearted women
crave most:  to plunge into the mystery,
head straight for the underground
garden, where whiteness
first flowers.

She always wanted him to give her
this knowledge.  The winter he emerged--
candescent and shivering-- from fog,
the secret beckoned from his skin:
the aching male, her hidden self.
Still she recalls the one who appeared
all those years ago, beneath the lush trees,
fur on his face, at his throat.
She leaned into his low, confiding
baritone, hoping to save his losses
within her own windpipe.  She remembers
his breath laced with mist,
how he wrapped an arm around
her scrawniness, and how she began
pouring her limbs inside him, as if
a man were a fleece, or
his heat a hot spring
where she could sit all night,
under stars, black water
foaming around her.