I poured gallons into you–
sickly-sweet honey, endless sticky flow–
Surely it made you sweeter,
a lighter taste on my tongue.
Yet I stayed floating in vinegar,
formaldehyde burns and the fetal curve of preservation
dyeing my skin in suspended decay.
I was a specimen you never cared to study too closely;
ornament, oddity, fascination,
sweet oddball, strange decor.
Glass jar on wooden shelf,
the perfect perch for perverse surveillance.
Paris looks upon Aphrodite and thinks her beautiful;
Eris looks upon the apple and finds it all too sweet.
There may be no island sanctuary within this amber sea;
you may carry me home on wax paper wings
and think me a fool for searching.
You heart evades me, your smile evades me, your skin evades me,
but, in honey or vinegar or sweet autumn cider,
your bones are mine.