Ann Keiffer

I Need a Lot of Kisses

 The earth can quake…
The sky may fall…
I can take it all…
as long as I get a lot of kisses.

In the worst of times—
say, when moving from
one house to another—
we’ve sometimes loved each other
like Mr. and Mrs. P. Mantis,
nearly biting each others’ heads off
…but we always spare the lips!
Because especially after nearly
biting each others’ heads off,
I will need a lot of kisses and
maybe even an extra kiss.

We’ve sometimes gone all clench-jawed
and evil-eyed over money, but even a
fiscal show-down doesn’t matter as long as
shortly after I know I’ll get a lot of kisses.

When twilight falls with its unnamed
sadness, when I sorrow for another’s
sorrow, I know I can come to you for the
comfort of just saying. And a lot of kisses.

And how would I have survived my long
depression, when I felt neither kissable nor
sane, if you hadn’t stood steadfastly by me
and given me a lot of kisses just the same?

There are times you withdraw into your
moody, silent, spiny self, when I brave
your thorns, and briars, and razor wire
and crawl right up into your lap
and get a lot of kisses by kissing you
until you laugh.

But who is kissing whom here?
Who needs a lot of kisses?
Who is being a lot kissed?
Lips-to-lips all kisses are
mirrored,
doubled,
communal,
reciprocal,
shared,
paired.
We get as many kisses as we give!

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Photo Credit: olcore

 

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About Ann

I am interested in the strange beauty of brokenness, in transforming possibility in difficult times, in how we heal even when we can’t get better, in the alchemy of surrender, in the interplay of light and shadow, in the bounty of everyday wonders, in the gift of laughter…and writing about it, all and everything.

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