Under threat of war, alone with the The Primavera,
three graces in a room full of Botticelli’s wonders,
the year “Libya Bomba Lampadusa”,
( the Uffici eerily empty of tourists)
my heart opened so wide it rendered
speech silent. The moment would last,
return fitfully from time to time the sense of serenity
scarcely found in the incessant drum beat of my work,
flying from one black security site to another
across the country for years, my body often
tighter than a drum. Tension radiating outward
set the tone, the terms of exchange, quenched
love, loves softening, it stopped the tongue.
Now this service to country and the devil
has ended and the withheld
tumbles forth in a flow, words, into a world
of caring. But love strapped with duty
strangled my dearest
creating ruptures never repaired.
It takes time to relax the strains
repair damage, to accept the love
one needs to live, to honor my loved ones
to hold them close within.