If I were a cinnamon peeler I would ride your bed And leave the yellow bark dust On your pillow.
Your breasts and shoulders would reek You could never walk through markets without the profession of my fingers floating over you. The blind would stumble certain of whom they approached though you might bathe under rain gutters, monsoon.
Here on the upper thigh at this smooth pasture neighbour to you hair or the crease that cuts your back. This ankle. You will be known among strangers as the cinnamon peeler's wife.
I could hardly glance at you before marriage never touch you --your keen nosed mother, your rough brothers. I buried my hands in saffron, disguised them over smoking tar, helped the honey gatherers...
When we swam once I touched you in the water and our bodies remained free, you could hold me and be blind of smell. you climbed the bank and said
this is how you touch other women the grass cutter's wife, the lime burner's daughter. And you searched your arms for the missing perfume
what good is it to be the lime burner's daughter left with no trace as if not spoken to in the act of love as if wounded without the pleasure of a scar.
You touched your belly to my hands in the dry air and said I am the cinnamon Peeler's wife. Smell me.