Hosea 2:7

“What does it matter how many lovers you have
if none of them gives you the universe?” – Jacque Lacan

“ut operaretur eum” – Voltaire’s Candide

Desire is taking a picture
of the moon. The trip to faraway
that made you miss your bed,
an apple gone soft.

The way summer fades the
new drapes pooling by the
window-pane. How pain feels
so much like suspense.

And I, thumbing my past
like an old brochure, a native

who knows what the tourist misses:
The country in all seasons. The way
cold light slant on the city bridge

shadows the daily, a garden now
with fields of heather purpling within
its borders. How love is a land in need

of always tilling, promises made of bone,
broken marrow bonds between us. Soil like
hands finally taking what’s given –

the rain that will come, a harvest from
sodden ground, backs arched under the
sun, bent over the earth in praise.

Angie Crea O’Neal’s poems have appeared in the Cumberland River Review, San Pedro River Review, Stirring: A Literary Collection and elsewhere. Her chapbook The Way Things Fall was published in 2017. She teaches English at Shorter University, Rome, Georgia.