a response to ‘The Kiss’ by Gustav Klimt

light of late afternoon
spills onto us like jars of wildflower honey
around my ankles
flowers form themselves
into bouquets of calla lily and cosmos, violet and freesia
we kneel as if in pagan prayer
knees on meadow lush with dew

you cannot will away my departure
by braiding blossoms into my hair
or whispering warm
onto my lips
(I can taste your words and they taste
coated in sugar
but stream down my throat
like blushing wine)
and you can not claim pieces of me
by scraping at my cheeks to exfoliate
(as if I will shed golden leaves at your feet
like autumnal trees
when I leave my last word on your skin)

we are secured together by the twine of hands and lips
tied humble to the soil by thick clinging vines of rapture
but I can untangle myself when I need to
fixed together by the heavy hanging cloak of certainty
but I can withdraw myself when I need to

infatuation only lasts as long as violets do
I will put away in a cool dry place
to preserve like pressed flowers)

Anna Geiger is a student at the School of the Arts in San Francisco, where she studies creative writing. She is a California Arts Scholar and staff editor of Umlaut literary journal. She enjoys coffee, travel, studying foreign languages, and reading every book that comes her way.

CSSSA ALUMNA - 2016 Creative Writing