In dusty fields I harvested the vine
And sweated at the lever as the grapes were
My aching hands still clutched their vagrant
Sleeping in the cold barracks of the
But now at dawn, beyond the reach of reason.
I wake in the chateau between your tangled
My sunburnt arm across your naked shoulder,
The mute accomplice of our mutual defeat.
2001; originally printed in The Hudson Review.
by permission of the author.