Copyright © 2002 Thibaut Dancette
Eve in the Garden
She was bored with the garden and its plump fruit,
her forefinger drawing circles in dirt between roots of the tree
in the plot's center, hair falling across her eyelids.
Adam was no help; he lolled around all day, remote,
flaccid as an earthworm in the sun's dispassionate rays.
He slept while she was created, bone of his bone, carved from his side,
exhausted perhaps from naming the creeping things, the gifts to him
meant to be his friends. Shielding his eyes with a thin wrist he turned
his back to her, wanting no companion, preferring solitude, to brood,
to watch the pond's fat carp pull air from the water's surface.
The skin across his shoulder blade twitched slightly from her fingertip
like a horse's flank repelling flies. Eve's boredom pressed into her
as if the entire firmament were sinking. She yearned for contact,
skin on skin. Nothing touched her in the windless garden,
just her own hands smoothed her yielding belly, the inward curve of her hips.
She had dreamt of a tree, scarred trunk shot from the earth's core,
this tree she leaned on now. A dream voice coaxed, the day you eat of it
you die. A breath warm on her neck. Better to eat and choke
than choke down the silent days, the man's quiet eyes skimming
over her like the landscape; sad, somber fellow.
Pebbles dug into the balls of her feet as she reached for an apple
the perfect red of Adam's lips gently open in sleep, the red of his beating
heart. I have dreamt of leaving this garden. His eyes met hers with interest
for the first time. Only faintly the fruit resisted; she ripped it from the stem
and parted its flesh with her thumbs.
Copyright © 2002
Shelley Renee-Ruiz has poetry published or forthcoming in Eclipse Literary Journal and The Coe Review.