Sunday, November 20, 2011

Tuesday Poem: The Person You Love

The Person You Love

The one you love is 72.8% water

The one you love is a rising torrent,
wet shoes in a flooded basement.
The one you love is a dark pine forest
where you wander without a map.
Rain drips from the branches
and runs down the back of your neck.
The one you love is 72.8% water
and 4.9% grudges.

The one you love is a house on a crumbling headland
under a sky stippled with blackbirds.
The house has many hidden rooms
A woman with a leashed panther
guards the cliff top path.
The one you love is 72.8% water
and 6.1% mystery

The one you love is a crumpled newspaper
and stacked kindling. The one you love
is crackling flames at the touch of a match,
the news ablaze, a burning bride.
The one you love is 72.8% water
and 9.3% fire.

The one you love is an exam for which you haven’t studied.
Your poems in a book published
before you were born.
The one you love
is a girl who carries lions
alongside waves crashing on the shore.

The one you love is 72.8% water,
6.1% mystery, 4.9% grudges,
9.3% fire, and 3.2% salt.

- Catherine Fitchett

"The Person You Love" appears in "Voiceprints 3", a collection of poems recently released by the Canterbury Poets' Collective. Submissions were invited from guest poets and open mic readers from the 2010 season.

The origin of the poem was a phrase I mysteriously found when leafing through old poetry notes - presumably jotted down from a science text or article - "the one you love is 72.8% water". All other percentages in the poem, I have to admit, are entirely my invention. Many of the images are dream fragments.

More Tuesday poems can be found at the main hub site, and at the links in the sidebar of that site.

1 comment:

Cally said...

I love this poem - have no idea what % water it is, but I love it nonetheless! Thank you :)