Silence is a language
and body movements play
an undecipherable song.
Despite the transparency of eyelashes
and the patience of statues,
the unsaid creates doubt.
I am unable to think and speak at the
same time. I am unable to travel backwards
and identify the words I should have said,
the perfect words.
I am most insightful when I am silent.
I am not gentle with those that are
most precious to me. If I was,
I would be able to recite the verses
that fill my mouth when our glances meet.
If I was,
I would translate languages
from movement and shades of cheeks.
I would weave words
of gold and trophy. I would
serve security on a silver plate
that never knew tarnish.
frostbitten hands grope
and feel nothing.
the marbles in my mouth
choke me silent.
“The Perfect Words” is previously published in To Anyone Who Has Ever Loved a Writer (2014).