Ellen June Wright

After Years

In mid conversation, 	I realize you have 
	light-brown eyes 		that never turn away. 

Like a great sea captain 		at the helm 
	of an ancient ship, 		your gaze is both 

intent and intense. 	The bow of your lip 
	is disarming. 			After twenty years, 

for the first time, 	I want you to kiss me 
	slowly so that I can 		savor every cell, 

so like a shawl, 		I can drape my arms 
	around your neck, 		so I can feel the stubble 

on your chin, so I can 	breathe the woody 
	fragrance on your skin, 		so all the blind years 

will fade like an 	apparition in the sun, 
	so all there ever was 		or ever will be is that kiss. 

Ellen June Wright‘s poetry has most recently been published in River Mouth Review, Santa Fe Writers Project, New York Quarterly, The Elevation Review, The Caribbean Writer and, is forthcoming in, Obsidian: Literature & Arts in the African Diaspora. Her work was selected as The Missouri Review’s Poem of the Week for their website. She was a finalist in the Gulf Stream 2020 summer poetry contest and is a founding member of Poets of Color virtual poetry workshop in New Jersey. She studies writing at the Hudson Valley Writers Center in Sleepy Hollow, New York.