Fragment: Master and Servant


                                    ]in front

                                    ]you would be willing
                                    ]to be carried

                                                —Anne Carson, If Not Winter: Fragments of Sappho

If some faceless reflection should approach me
from behind, approaching me in the bedroom,
& whisper hoarsely in my ear desires,
            I would let her. I

would stare into the crown-gold mirror in front
of the bed & in front of us, & step toward
that bed, with her, into it. I would loosen—
            if she would let me—

her arms around my waist (you would be willing),
unbuckle her tight, leather fingers, & slight-
ly, like fish, tuck them in me to be carried
            away, inside me.

Grant Quackenbush is from San Diego.

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