MUSK AND MYRRH
Indebted to the camel covering I wore ’
on our first evening, with the Oriental mist
of Opium by Saint Laurent sprayed on my wrist,
I drop the empty bottle, and slide closed the drawer.
The scent is yet upon me, lasting evermore,
exotic but discreet. This hand — that you have kissed –
still smells of musk and myrrh as I approach the store,
adjusting the fine mayhem of my hair’s French twist.
Dior will never do, my love, nor any faint,
saliferous perfume remindful of the sea;
but only coriander, clove, plum, pepper, peach
begot by the imagination of a saint:
to lift you from your field, and lure you back to me;
to raise you from the dead, secure within my reach.
– This poem appears in the February 15 print issue of National Review.