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April 01st 2008 print

Rod Usher

Bent as an Arrow

Straight lines may look perfect on paper but
All finally fail, veer or peter out.
Find a line infinite in rectitude?
Pope-to-God, priests quickly offer, but doubt
This vertical too, words so fallible
Reverse-charge calls tending to cramp one’s clout.

Going straight, straight-up, straight-talking, being
-faced, -laced, sexually inclined or bent …
See? All lines curve covertly off the page.
Nature vetoed lineals, each try rent
By reach or time, relieved to deviance
Of the richest random kind, heaven-sent.

My true love has no straight lines upon her
She’s callipygous, breasted, calved and lipped
Skin singing homage to arc, ripple, round.
Not with a ruler was Eden’s Eve hipped
Nor her triangle made isosceles;
Never was geometry so well skipped.

A woman eschewing fixed and formal shapes
Moulding me to her and herself to life
Heart and mind, navel, nipples, mouth or spine
Unaligned with any math that would knife
Hard rules, correct answers, repetition.
She surrounds me, nicely crooked, my wife.

Rod Usher