Habit lives at home, at habitation’s door.

(Even travel can’t break it.) When he was gone,

the air still silk with his perfume, his voice a ribbon

tangled in her head, she only wanted more.

Having (rooted in giving) meant taking,

and she took disguises: nun veiled in lies,

hunter in her guise…

even she forgot when she was faking.


By then her settled tendency acquired, her fluid charm

in service to her pain–how could we know?

There were those pockmarks in the crook of her arm,

but seeing doesn’t always make it so.

He would return and call, to our chagrin.

We’d bar the door, but habit let him in. 


in The Iowa Review 37/1 Spring 2007


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