One Hard Night

by Cyndi Yuska

Golden tears rest on my shoulder,
plead to not be parted
from their bearer.

Whisper in my ear, remind me you
are but a lily in my hand
whom I may crush

or let blossom in its prime, standing
proud within my palm, alive.
Feel your weight

press upon my wide splayed fingers,
purest white, majestic petals,
delicate and light,

tickle softness near my thumb. Flex
my fingers, close them
round your fragile

starlit head. You fight my grasp, tears
beg as I stare, cold, at your
pain. Your beauty

crumples as I crush you, petals torn and worn
to transparency. But I, even in
my heartlessness,

see innocence in your fragrant, slender form,
and can no longer bear the pain
coursing through

your battered blades, your tender limbs falling
toward my pulsing wrist. Cold
tears mingle now

with golden ones upon my shoulder, my fingers
tremble, fumble with your faded
form. A single word

escapes my lips as I realize
the bright weight
of passion.

* Based on Li-Young Lee's "Epistle" and "My Indigo."