Gemma’s first night with Lucy – Arvon 1992

Gemma’s first night with Lucy

Round her waist is a snakeskin belt.
She fondles my breasts with her fingertips.
Snake-mesmerized rabbit, my muscles melt.
I wait for the liquid assault of her lips.

She unbuckles the belt. Her dress blows loose.
The snake stares up at me from the floor.
She strokes my hair. “What fruit, what juice,
What sweetness” she says. I try to ignore

The snake’s eyes. I am soft’ning. She takes
My shoulders, undoes my dress, and touches
My breasts, now naked. I start to shake.
We are both naked. She sits and watches

Me shiver. The snake on the floor appears
To slither towards me. Snatching my hand,
She wafts it to finger her lips and ears.
The snake is crawling t’wards me over sand

That burns and scorches and spits. The whole
Of my body judders. “Don’t be afraid”
She whispers, moth-wings. How did I fall?
Lying on the floor … The room’s walls fade …

I’m stretched on the sand. A tongue lunges —
Snake tongue. So gentle. I change to a bird:
Dove, hypnotized by the snake’s hunger.
Both feather-light, we float upwards.

The snake-tongue travels; I follow.
But I am only a looseness, a mist
Spread over the sky like a rainbow,
Vanishing into the snake’s death-kiss.

Snake is the rainbow. But I the sky
Drift gently, in snowflakes, downwards. The floor.
The room. Her lips, tongue, on my eyes.
“Rest now” she says. “Then we’ll have more.”