a burning glass that chars. Passion's a whip
of words in every relationship
Whose terms my poems set. There's no escape
from all my public agony. I try
to turn my muses' mortal flesh to light
but it's myself I think of when I write,
my words, my love, the thing that will not die.
Scholars won't know their names, will have to guess
which love inspired which poem. Stumble through
my diaries – read them wrong – as scholars do.
They'll write so movingly of my distress
but never think of how all poets lie
or how each sonnet made my muses cry.