The Querida Letters

There is a moon that hangs over Minneapolis some nights, watching the steam from a million chimneys waft towards it.  It is the same moon that hangs over the derelict samurai castle, the decrepit Seattle wharf, and over a cornfield in southwestern Iowa where Imelda visited the grave of her lover back in 1948.  She wept softly, her tears drifting to the warm dirt.

Back under moonlit Minneapolis, there is no warm earth, only frozen hovels.  In your boudoir, we bask in the heat of intimacy and whispers, where I inhale your chili-powder skin and listen to you tell me about the hanging lanterns in Laos, the chiefs of Mogmog, the number 44 seat on the train in India.  My lips rest on your temple, I feel your eyelashes bat gently brush against my cheek.  Dim diwali lights hang against the wall, the shadows like black velvet pushing beyond the periphery of soft light.  I can feel it every time you smile here in my arms, like an Arctic sunrise.  The sheets are twisted and tinged with perspiration; we are warm here in this shelter, where we can trade secrets in secret.  We can make love slowly, with our eyes closed and only using our sense of touch to practice this alchemy.

Scant hours before I felt your heartbeat pressed against my chest, its rhythm matching the pulsating street music.  There is a woman in sequins and blue eye shadow standing next to us, clapping her hands high about her head; she is nearly 2 meters tall and reminds one of a dangerously tilting palm tree.  There is a trio of tiny Spaniards to the right jumping up and down, and to the left a man in a fur coat and cane boogying down to our left, his hands infested with thick rings.  The noise of the crowd provides a melody to the rhythm that floats at a nearly inaudible register, but one can feel it in the bones.  The disco ball on the ceiling is doing a weak impression of the moon, who waits outside impassively.  Mist rises off of our shoulders as I feel every muscle in your lithe body pressed against mine.  The moon speaks, we listen, and your heartbeat continues to roll like waves upon the shore.  I kiss you in the amber glow, and feel the lightning emanate from your fingertips whenever you touch me.


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