This One’s for You
Even if you didn’t have green eyes (in the bathtub, blue).
Even if you didn’t have a lovely singing voice,
or care for Alexandrine champagne
some slow Saturday evenings to sing it through,
it pleases me, your lips close to my ear,
or when you’re a big girl, and I’m a big girl too.
Five years difference between we two.
Sometimes it hardly matters. I’ve decided to worship you,
Diana, goddess of the forest—
or is she the one of the hunt?
Who cares? You remind me of her
too. Some woman caught me up, breathless, in her strong arms,
said breathe, darling. Her eyes were green-blue.
Vague resemblances: that’s the daily news.
Meaning: I’m willingly a fool for you
any hour past midnight,
and almost anytime in three-quarter view.
Consider this, too: stumbling back, after a fight,
to someplace we could call home, you and I have been known
to duet a jubilee so funky it sounds like the blues.
What steady arrows you shoot, Diana, become
a goddess of the hearth: you whisper
time to put the porchlight on,
and we do. Who am I talking to?
What is this strange glare, this prescience that you won’t be true?
Sometimes you say something like even so, boo,
and it sounds like breathe, darling. That’s why this one’s for you.
Jan Heller Levi, “This One’s for You” from Once I Gazed at You in Wonder. Copyright © 1999 by Jan Heller Levi. Reprinted by permission of Louisiana State University Press.
Source: Once I Gazed at You in Wonder (Louisiana State University Press, 1999)