Propriety is not a line etched upon your fair face,
So how could I know it?
Each of your words, which move the lines of your face to speak,
Are reminiscent of so many lines already writ—
They are a breath away from the lines of an England Abbey
That lit the fiery soul;
They are the rhythmic beat of stone against stone
Yearly mending a hated wall;
They are the gentle pulsing of the sea’s great waves,
Charging along murderously in the belly.
And in these all, none speaks propriety to me,
So I ask, how could I know it?
Or if, perhaps, tomorrow, you are some lines of grammar,
The most loved semi-colon
Or an ellipsis that continues a thought…
Or the long strand of a dash
By which to complete the thoughts of the lonely poetess.
Or maybe there is a curve I haven’t yet seen,
Here by your ear, and there by your chin,
Or here, to furrow your deep brow.
So what is propriety
Compared to some such sacred line etched upon your face?
7 February 2008