The 2River View 19.4 (Summer 2015)

William Knudsen

Hymn #5

The evening comes, a soft moan in the crook of the
neck, shuddering into nighttime’s breast.

The air is heavy with the breath of God, a thick fog
covering the city like sheets damp with sweat.

Come closer. Like we might know each other
biblically. Brimstone, exodus.

What are we made for if not this? The clemency of
cracked open, unbuttoned and blushing naïve.

The dance is our first tongue spoken. Your hips are
songs I would press my ear to if you’d let me.

If life has taught me one thing, Heaven is a small
room with open windows,

headlights through the blinds. God is in the moment
we forget our words. Our bodies speak only of mercy.

Hymn #23

In the fever, I dream her shape out the window.
Cotton dress clinging to her hips. She trembles

unbuttoned and her ribs sing. There are old world
gods in her smile, dances around ancient fires.

I would not trade such fictions for any truth, save
one. A song upon waking, lips brushing against

earlobes and unbuttoned how we might sing.
How those old gods might sing.

William Knudsen is a writer and musician from Fort Collins, Colorado. His poetry has been published in The Legendary, Sparrow Ghost Collective Anthology, and Streetlight Magazine.

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