Of Friendship

by Hannah Brooks-Motl

"My ability doesn't go far enough to undertake a rich, polished picture"
So I doodled around her, "a lovely woman
Tapering off to a fish"
She flapped to the corner and wrote there
Have you noticed her empty
How a better hand waves
Then I try


From the apartment we flattened paths to the trees
Sunlight on the quiet between us
I gathered up our inclinations
Returned to my description
How seldom we all are I felt wearing her coat—
"Because it was she, because it was I"
And then by the years I held her in fabulous net
Wearing her jacket we shook from the winter
"Embraced each other by our names"
And danced in the regular rooms
In loving, in play
I have shirked


"Walk in those other friendships bridle in hand, not so well tied"
Go where the action is clean, in passion
To learn "the secret to reveal to no other man"
Even doubled my soul
"Nothing bitter or stinging about it"
We plunged the mixture of us
Walking free


And at the edge of the plot
It required many names
It sat up on the couch
It entered the singing
With shy mouth it belonged there


Last updated March 15, 2023