still
------------------------------------------------------------------

galatea woke in my place today and
stretched for her sculptor and his tools. and
i wound parts of me around my fingers until
we dropped. as if i were so malleable
to lose so soon.

galatea smiles from my mirror -- having
taken my breakfast with too much milk
and washed my hair all wrong. the milk
curdles in my stomach and
i feel real.

when i am made of stone not clay
i find what i need. she hides in a closet
full of his art and my too many shoes. and when
he comes calling he brings his chisel.

she smiles when i cry as he pulls the pebbles
from my tears and nods at what he
has made, smiles, and is finished.
he kisses my lips.

and i am alive.

hli
(3/03/95)