A Lioness Lingers

                    — for Marybeth




It’s love when seeing
can read between
a breeding taught, manners
bricked by habit, the involuntary tuck
of the invisible dress
every time sitting down even in jeans,

fingers clearing



When you read, can read
within her
anticipatory tone the particularly known —
one eyebrow lifts
to who you are now
stumbling to say:  “The lady will have …
sesame sticks without the seeds, and I will have
the same.”



Vivid, brilliant, many rayed,
deep toothed, loose limbed, wind-bent ....
Suffused        in this you my tantalizing dandelion 
gliding in and out these airs I hear, can hear

in this you our inner        living        room

even dust lift and settle, settling.

No, but I want to — I want.        You        inspire that.

That want. 


--- Chris Custer