Becalmed brides, sisters, speech
so faint the spider, who
can only know land as a wave
of webs, could hear their voices
only as the distant, fallopian sounds
he always heard at human birth.
The tension in his eyes
was like a wake of cold water,
as if the sea had parted
and gravity had brought his web
to rest against a bucket on
the frozen floor, too cold for life.
How I do love you,
Little Betty Bo Peep.
How I do care about
your lovely, lonely sheep.
And you too Miss Muffett,
that such a king should play bo-peep,
and go to fools
while grapes hang frozen on
your vines. I might
have explained the clouds to you.
I might have found the great breath.
Do you see this?
Look on her: look, her lips.
St. Lucy’s gown forever fits.