Cheryl's Pulse

Cheryl darted around me like a hummingbird
seeking sweet nectar from a sunburned body.

Sad to disappoint, my pheromones cast
an unpleasant gardener odor. Sweaty. Dirty.

Covered in fertilizer head to toe, I wavered
yet stood like a pillar of nourishment unbound.

My misleading appearance deserved far less
than received: undaunted, Cheryl fluttered

around me backwards, forwards (upside down
in my mind's eye), so I let her build imagination's nest

high upon my shoulders, feed on honeyed thoughts,
flick her tongue on crimson hands like a red cardinal flower.

I hung like a ring around Cheryl's neck—a cameo portrait
out of place in time, eternally etched by a summer breeze.

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