Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Quilts, Flags, and other Wrappings


Quilts, Flags, and other Wrappings


I started the quilt
when the only reminder
of civility I had was a stuffed doll
whose button eyes fell off.

Sewed while bathing
under the moon’s eclipse
and watched you throw my porcelain spoons—
a collection of gifts, against the wall.

I stopped stitching
when you drove that bulldozer
in sight of all those present

at Jose's welfare funeral
just because he was gay and my friend.
I glared at the tangled patches of quilt
as they threw me into a paddy wagon
took me to jail for protesting
that unwinnable war.

I climbed into bed even as Allen lay
covered with Kaposi’s sarcoma
to calm both our fears, his and mine.

Studied you when a signature
to keep your only brother
        from becoming homeless
made you shudder
at the funeral expense if he died
while the blotch of endearment you gave him
was still warm on that piece
of white insignificance.

Then I added the names.

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