LEARNING TO CLIMB WALLS

 

There can be earthquakes
in little towns,
far from tectonic plates,
on little streets, rarely shaken
where we sat, once,
on the wall of a garden
now obsolete,
the summer burning
through our cool-lessness
as we trembled beneath attractions
we didn’t have the words
to understand
while eyes watched from windows,
trying to translate
thoughts tossed
between their local boy
and a sandy-haired student of exchange.

And I wanted to exchange-
to uncover
all that was growing curious.

We sat on this wall, once,
in the kiss
of youth’s sunlight,
in the stifling days
of undulating adolescence
and the growing tension
beneath every question,
and that temptation-
and I wanted nothing more
than to touch that temptation
despite our twisted tongues
and those eyes
always watching, always wondering
what was unfolding between us-
two boys just beginning
to join the colours that made blue,
for a while, beneath the weight
and the worth
of all the nothingness
that never trembled
for longer than a month in the summer
when our legs
occasionally touched, like tectonic plates,
shifting positions beneath
all that was once solid,
sensations rubbing up against
all that we wanted
and what, I suppose we knew,
at the time, we could never really have.

There can be earthquakes, in little towns.

  

All words and photos by Damien B Donnelly

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