Afterglow [poem]

Hands reach out tentatively to touch the wonder of your face,
your skin translucent like spun glass, only more beautiful.
I could stare into your crystalline eyes for centuries,
bask in the afterglow of your smile until I am dust.

I worry you are oblivious to my feelings – or worse – uncaring.
You seem unaware of the cyclone of emotions roiling
beneath my surface or perhaps too concerned with
your own inner storms, your own demons.

I see a darkness in your eyes sometimes when you think
I am not looking. There is a quality of restlessness about you
that makes me want to reach out to you,
try and comfort you.

Is it possible to be both frightened and fascinated by you?
I sense a storm in your soul, the lightning flash of which
I sometimes catch reflected in your eyes.
I see a question on your lips which I long to answer.

But I know that you and I can never be.
This burgeoning flower of feeling must and will be stopped
before it can open, petal by petal,
and reveal that which I’ve tried so hard to conceal.

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