Baby

Has anybody ever called you ‘baby’?
I mean, like a lover.
Not the lady down at the hardware store who asks
‘did you find everything alright, baby?’
Not the old woman at the grocery store,
‘could you reach that for me, baby?’
And definitely not your mom when you fell off your skateboard,
‘oh, baby, come here; let me look at that.’

I mean,
has a lover ever called you ‘baby’?
Have you ever heard the word baby roll off a woman’s tongue
when she’s on top of you and she’s sucking your bottom lip
in-between hers so gently
that ‘baby’ is a mere breath that floats into your mouth;
a quiet sigh of release
‘baby.’

Has anybody ever slow danced with you in the kitchen,
a pot of soup simmering on the stove?
Made you cornbread from scratch to go in that pot of soup?
Has anybody ever driven all night and part of the day
just to get to where you are?
Only to have to leave the next morning?
Has anybody ever rode you hard and fast, or slow and easy,
as many times as you could stand it
just to quiet the voices in your head?


In the morning I’ll be gone, so,
I want you to sit down now
and let all the weight you’ve been carrying 
dissolve under my hands.
Let me whisper to you all the ways you make me weak
until you slump under the heavy blanket of my love.

I’ll feed you this hot soup and cornbread then
to nourish your body.

And when you’ve had your fill of that,
I’m going to release the darkness back out of your soul
until you explode
over and over again. 

‘baby’

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