Eating Babies

1
 
FAT
is the soul of this flesh.
Eat with your hands, slow, you will understand
breasts, why everyone
adores them—Rubens’ great custard nudes—why
we can’t help sleeping with
pillows.
 
The old woman in the park pointed,
Is it yours?
Her gold eye-teeth gleamed.
 
I bend down, taste the fluted
nipples, the elbows, the pads
of the feet. Nibble earlobes, dip
my tongue in the salt fold
of shoulder and throat.
 
Even now he is changing,
as if I were
licking him thin.
 
 
2
 
HE SQUEEZES his eyes tight
to hide
and blink! he’s still here.
It’s always a surprise.
 
Safety-fat,
angel-fat,
 
steal it in mouthfuls,
store it away
where you save
 
the face that you touched
for the last time
over and over,
your eyes closed
 
so it wouldn’t go away.
 
 
3
 
WATCH HIM sleeping. Touch
the pulse where
the bones haven’t locked
in his damp hair:
the navel of dreams.
His eyes open for a moment, underwater.
 
His arms drift in the dark
as your breath
washes over him.
 
Bite one cheek. Again.
It’s your own
life you lean over, greedy,
going back for more.

Chana Bloch, "Eating Babies" from The Past Keeps Changing. Copyright © 1992 by Chana Bloch.  Reprinted by permission of The Sheep Meadow Press.
Source: The Past Keeps Changing (The Sheep Meadow Press, 1992)
More Poems by Chana Bloch