The souls trappedin the trees in Dante’s forestof suicides can only speakwhen their branches are brokenas they bleed.
What else is languagenow but injury: why did youbreak me?
Why did you leave me?
And relief: to bleedin one place, for one reason,to say I failed to livesanely on earthwithout you.
Even in the dream,we lie awake in thedark, side by side.
When I askif you’re dead, you say,Alive in your mind.
And of the four truths,I remember two: we arealone, we will suffer.
It’s no wonderwe cannot sleep.
We cannot die,your cool handin my hand, carvedfrom ivory or ice.
It is possible to belovely in the dark.
A few thin treesleaning towardeach other.
In ghost or palelight, my fingerson my lips.
If to speak is to die,I will whisper.
If to speak is to die,I will maketrees of my hands—
I will say nothingby shivering, I willsay everything.