His soft, auburn hair
Curls across the linen pillow
Like the silken skin
Of the twisted manzanita tree
She touched on that cold morning
When they met upon the mountain.
He fell in love with her
In that moment when she
Revealed her secret, poetic self
Her hand sliding down the red bark,
As now her hand slips
Through the tangled waves of his hair.

I'm not your door he whispers,
Staring coldly at the ceiling,
I won't be scorched by your desire.
Her chastised hand withdraws
And as they lie in silence
She can only think of his skin,
Sliding across her, silken and warm
And how it will never quite
Make her forget what she can never be
For they are both too young to know
Her burning is not a weakness
but a birthfire.

©  1985 J.L.Stanley
Manzanita