House built of breath
by Marge Piercy
Words plain as pancakes syruped with endearment
Simple as potatoes homely as cottage cheese.
Wet as onions, dry as salt, Slow as honey,
fast as seltzer,
My raisin, my sultana, my apricot love,
My artichoke, furry one, my pineapple.
I love you daily as milk, I love you nightly
as aromatic port.
The words trail a bitter slime like slugs,
then in the belly warm like cabbage borscht.
The words are hung out on the line,
sheets for the wind to bleach.
The words are simmering
slowly on the back burner like a good stew.
Words are kindling in the woodstove
Even the quilt at night
is stuffed with word down.
When we are alone the walls sing and even the cats talk, but only in Yiddish.
When we are alone we make love in deeds.
And then in words.
And then in food