My Sister

Of all grand jongleurs I count myself one. As my mother breathes, I have ways of delighting. I spread them all out on a hard floor, and when I have sizzled in a room, I create for my dear, dear friends. But here, we come slowly. So I look out, and wait, and wait to love myself.

As I saw my sister descending the stair, I collected my thoughts and my objects. For her I would leave them all gladly (though some part of them is always with me) at any time of the day; for her I think I would even smash them, though she would never want me to. Yes, sometimes behind closed doors I say that I will have only my little objects, that I do not need her at all; but my mother will smother the guise in my eyes, and I will go to my sister, and we will go outside together, and the magnitude of the sin will overwhelm me until I all but cry.

Today it will be like that, I thought as I saw her come down. She didn’t look at me; she never did until we were out of the house and she had pulled me down onto the grass with her. We walked a little distance from the house first. The sky was very gray, and no one was in sight anywhere. Sometimes I see little girls passing by near the road.

My sister and I rolled over and over, stopping tangled together and hurting. For a wand is very strong, even when it is small and even when buried deep in the earth.

Sky, grass, the shells of the bones, all stop and cry with me; all stand still and, like me, center over her; all press their

1965, 1966, or 1967

Updated May 05, 1997.