The Quiet Time


	In the quiet time:
	After the thrusting, gasping, heat, 
	We lie together, wet skin to skin;
	And gaze deep into this stranger's eye.

	To be so close;
	To feel the heart, to know the cries,
	To see the other with all armor down;
	And yet to know we're not quite true.

	To lie entwined;
	Sharing the intimate pulsing within -
	No two will ever be closer than we are now;
	And yet we stare across a gulf.

	The love, the need,
	The warmth, the soft caress,
	The caring, the yearning, the lump in the throat:
	You know I share these things with you.

	But more than this?
	Alas, it shall never be;
	For other pasts and other bonds
	Shall keep us always apart.

	And what of your desires?
	Your womanly need for a stable base;
	A promise made, a commitment given?
	This is not mine to give.

	And the rampant worm
	Raises his purple, brainless head
	And casting about with one blind eye,
	Seeks always for more of his chosen prey.

	Is this then all?
	Is it only the same tired clichés,
	Is each only acting out his archetypical rôle?
	Is all this play but a sad charade?

			Perhaps.

	And yet...

	There's still the warmth, the joy that will not be denied;
	The lump in the throat when I look at you,
	In the quiet time.


							copyright 1984 by Brian K. Crawford