Finally he lets go the hand of the boy
who believed insects rhymed
like his mother’s verses,
who daydreamed cricket cottages in grass forests,
rabbit families in cozy tunnels,
the woven castles of birds, moons bold with grins,
the smoky spirits of candles, of magic hidden everywhere,
gold buried in frost, the secret lives of dogs and cats,
skates that sailed, scooters that flew,
the immortal souls of shadow puppets.
Finger by finger, he lets go.
The woman he really wants leans against her red convertible
under the shade of a maple in the afternoon of the dream
when he touched her maiden breast
with the green leaf of his adolescent palm
the last day he was handsome,
when the butterfly of so many colors dazzled youth with its dance,
when wind fluted trees and shook blossom bells,
when sunshine split open its shell hatching the man
who betrayed the boy again and again,
finally fallen to mortal self, trudging streets of a foreign city,
in search of a newspaper to roll into his spotted fist.