I rush trembling into the jungle
when he calls. I run through
pineapple plantations, plumeria
passion fruit and mangoes
crowding roadside stands burdened
by the pressure of El Greco skies.
The world is simple, vulnerable
and innocent. She dreams of salvation
and marriage like a virgin, a Catholic,
a girl who believes in wishes and charms.
Thin clouds are a pastel stitchery.
This is the architecture of seashells
and delusion. These sinuous etchings
and tunnels in air. Pathways could open.
He will not permit this.
I am sixteen again, refined by constant
heat and steam and motion—
The subliminal pulse of the agitated ocean
and the ambivalence of Kona storms
above acres of arrested sugar cane
parched, empty of serenity
dull beyond bored.
Fields yawn as I run.
He could be anyone
here where complications mean
nothing in this seamless redundancy
of oblivious green.
The man is incidental to this process.
He insists upon this.
It is the torn wind I love
the sudden wreckage
the startled gash of wood
ripped in half. A sunken galleon,
a legion of condemned men
an invented contagion beneath.
It is hurtling into confused elements
that arouses me and the sea speaking
through her girl-lips. Her slow waking
anger is familiar, soothing
like a mirror or balm.
I am intimate with wounded rock
and the sculpture of disaster.
Immeasurable drownings define me.
I know the intricate asanas of rage
and the decay that births hurricanes,
the subtle abuses and discarded vows.
I swallow volcanoes.
My skin is chameleon.
I too could erase an island if I chose.