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The Poetry Of.
Kenneth P. Gurney...........................................


Delphi, who reads the stars
like a book of poems, writes
a verse upon my body
through her long dream
of tangled-leg sleep.

Delphi accepts her name
as a label, but knows it is not her
that the word defines—her identity
is lost in the centuries old pages
of poems written down by others
as prophecy.

You will produce seven children ...
The sun casts your fate as it casts a shadow ...
Let the dolphins guide your ship ...

Delphi finds a harmony with the crows.
Their chorus lasts until the stiff smell
of sizzling bacon fills the kitchen
and expands through the window
to the porch where she stands.

She arrives at the breakfast table
and eats in silence. The newspaper
remains unopened as she knows
all the stories, all the game scores.

When she moved in, I thought,
Delphi would teach me not to worry,
but worry, she says, is just a prayer
nudging the stars about the sky.

Delphi, dressed and ready for her day,
comes to me and says, show me my future.
So I bend just enough to kiss her
full on the lips.


Try not to touch me
when we have sex.

I don't mean with your body,
but with your love,

as I pray that your fingers
stop at my skin, never reach

my heart. Only shallow kisses
that do not steal my breath.

Watch your wetness roll off
my skin, like rain on the desert,

that turn dry arroyos
into channeled rage release.

The buck of this wild hurt
throws you five or six times

before you stand a chance
of taming it, before

it breaks the corral and flees
back into the ropeless hills.


Thursday didn't feel too well,
went home early from work
after getting Friday to cover
the extra hours.

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