Beautiful Noise

Two Sonnets for February


Herodias' child, the veils, as you dance,

Make stormy seas of color, hide, reveal,

Pander your cool purpose, accent and conceal.

This is a song of love, but not romance;

That is a mime of lust, your hungry dance.

One, and the effect is to distract. The eye,

Caught catlike by the flight of color–high,

Rich royal wing, quick wave of cochineal–

Follows, drawn from your skin, the woven peel

Till two, an emerald square, forces the glance

To the statuary center, clenched by sudden

Static, now the pace all honey in your feet.

Words are in your eyes. Above the edge they meet

Mine; it falls, then three, black Nile mud and


Four, blood's crimson, stir unmingled, mud and

Rubies spinning form from chaos where you meet

And shape the shapeless. Shining jeweled feet

Strike unyielding stone, bells cry sudden

Hue and five falls, Turkish green. I glance

At fragments--belly, shoulder, heel; I peel

With dreaming vision, one more cochineal

And six, as if obeying, flies, impelled, high

Then plummeting, bound to a buckle. But my eye,

Impatient for an end, seizes once again the dance

When seven, bone-white seven falls, necromance

White, and the music halts. No reason to conceal

The depths of your desire; time now to reveal,

On silver plate, the object of your dance.

–February, 1995

Poetry Writing Dancing Badger