THE CLAY RESISTS
my fingers --
yet I know she's there, squirming,
slick, warm in my hands.
Thumbs nudge away clay
until her back emerges -- vertebrae soft nubs
rippling along spine to curved neck.
I discover her legs folded,
one tucked into the other,
arms lowered to red lap.
She allows me to add tiny owl
feathers, bits of mother-of-pearl
to her terra cotta hair.
Light dazzles as she turns.
A trickle of diamond dust
leaks from one breast,
burns my palms.
m a r i a n m c d o n a l d
b a i n b r i d g e i s l a n d , w a s h i n g t o n
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