Gated, sheltered, nook-dwelling darkness.
Then the opening of eyes, thresholds, sky;
uncovering of shoulders and of sun.
Half-spent, recess has finally begun,
this slow dawning of my wan smile,
extension of lung, neck, and hand—
a butterfly glinting sees my welcome,
senses safety, deigns to land.
A moment of shining wings
until its nesting brings
stinging, starting, a jerk back.
Too late, the deed is done,
Receding into air—
flesh opening its petals.
takes a special grace;
all my small-ball self
cannonballs into moats,
disintegration, ripples still extending out like gentle hands.