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First Encounters

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Love laughed in my face
a boisterous, blinding, laugh
that tickled my eyes
and filled my naïve nose
with bitter breath,
when first my pale hand
reached out and recoiled
from the taunting flames.

A small rosy island surfaced on
my smooth silky skin,
but the waves of time lapped at the shore,
eroding grain by grain
until it was only a sandbar
barely breaching the level surface.

Then love laughed again,
a smothering, intoxicating laugh
inviting me to join in his
erotic dance.
Again pale fingers,
now creased and blemished,
grasped tentatively at the garish glow
and hoped for warmth.





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