Adrienne Rich





Calibrations

She tunes her guitar for Landstuhl
where she will sit on beds and sing
ballads from when Romany
roamed Spain

. . .

A prosthetic hand calibrates perfectly
the stem of a glass
or how to stroke a face
is this how far we have come
to make love easy

Ghost limbs go into spasms in the night
You come back from war with the body you have

. . .

What you can’t bear
carry endure lift
you’ll have to drag

it’ll come with you the ghostlimb

the shadow   blind
echo of your body spectre of your soul

. . .

Let’s not talk yet of making love
nor of ingenious devices
replacing touch

And this is not theoretical:
A poem with calipers to hold a heart
so it will want to go on beating