David McNaron • Grace

She’s twenty-two,
Twenty two years younger than me
And looks sixteen
She haunts me
Taunts me too
She nimbly opens plastic containers
That could hold in the plague
The computer adroitness
Of a gang leader with a switchblade
Says chain stores and processed food aren’t bad
Big screen TVs aren’t vulgar
Or clothing with writing on it (to a degree)
Doesn’t like vegetables,
Thai food seafood sushi Indian Middle Eastern . . .
Doesn’t drink
Drinks soft drinks
None of it’s registered on her
She looks great
Nearly always in black,
Jeans and combat boots
She hasn’t been anywhere
But knows lots of stuff

She hates the sun
That ages skin
Hates the light that floods a room
Likes my body dressed in moonlight
Stays up late and sleeps
Until noon
Or goes in sleepy to work or school

Grace, new life in alabaster Spanish skin
Her hair, a waterfall of night
Tumbling down
Brown eyes like autumn
Her breasts would fill teacups but I won’t go there
With you
She’s magic and sometimes reverts
To the way she looked
Before we dated
My before and after Grace
We were going steady before our first date

That tantalizing face
That nothing bad sullies
She glides through the world like a cool water snake

I tell you she’s true and giving like rain
On lily pads, but sometimes hides in shadows
She creates by cocking her head
Forever young her mind races
To the spot where she knows we should be
It’s there in her eyes,
A glade in the woods where shade swallows sunlight