The kind you’re born with, the kind you choose, the kind that teach Catholic school
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— for Kim
So: the heart opens glistening in the chest,
wet like the tinsel branches of the palm tree standing tall in sun
after rain, after a day so gray nothing could shine.
The heart shines; then it convulses,
longing, as usual, to touch and hold.
It expands and contracts
a few billion times —
that’s what hearts do.
The palm tree
glitters for nothing and no one.
Stands through rain,
sun — that’s what palm trees do.
You are too beautiful, the heart cries bitterly,
pulsing like orgasm around the gleaming world,
the monumental, never-to-be-grasped
beauty of the world.
The palm tree says nothing.
High, impossibly high in its branches
grow the ripened dates.
Ruth L. Schwartz