Saturday, September 8, 2012

unmentionables

Strange they do so much of the heavy lifting, there’s so little of them to see. Just a hint of ribbon, a whisper of lace. So little left to hold every thing in place, just that furtive struggle of fabric against flesh. So little left to the imagining, yet the imagination just won’t quit. The subtlety is the sophistication, everything said so succinctly and so well. There are words left, to be sure. It is unsaid, not unsayable. A solemn box, some hint of tissue. Every delicacy has its demands.

The stricture holds the tongue in place, turning into scripture through these urgent, ardent repetitions. Say any name long enough, something is bound to answer. Wealth conserves our ignorance while poverty strains indignant. Plaintive crosses and endearing charms, the way of flesh always in the winding down. The whole convention all hint and hide, the slow gaze and the careful mouth. The entire tradition dependent on knowing  the signs. Stopping for a moment when the signs say stop. Going until the signs say otherwise. The law lingers around the borders, the letter never held for long.

Peel away these dull particulars. Bear the wary burden of these suches and these sooths. Feel the air rush in as your dress falls away. Always that flush surprise of how very much more less becomes. Discretion gives way to distraction, the abrupt silence that erupts every time you enter the room. The weight of every stare presses against the fact of flesh. All the veils and pedestals shameless paraphernalia of the heavy tread of a hurried heart. All words and etiquette cut from the cloth of that delayed reveal. Say what you want, you can never say enough.

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