La Bruja

We met at three in the morning,
Our taxis gliding up to
The same corner at the same time,
Both of us drunk, or pretending to be.

We embraced under scaffolding,
Temporary like us. I lifted you
To blow out the candle on your head,
But its flame did not extinguish:

Stoked by someone else’s kisses,
It looked so natural in your hair,
Like a buoy on water,
Its flame teetering, slanting,

Skewed, swelling, solo.
Back in my home, you couldn’t
See the candle in your hair,
And denied it was there, and said

Even if it was you were too drunk to balance it,
But it was there, burning,
As you fell asleep in my arms.
It balanced on your head,

Melting all night, so wax covered
Your face with a thousand drips
Till I could barely read your expressions.
As you slept, the shadows cast by your candle

Foretold your future on the wall by my bed,
So I’ve seen everything that will happen to you,
And can forgive and applaud you before everyone else.
I know you don’t believe there was a candle in your hair,

But there really was, gone only
When you woke at dawn to leave,
Melting to nothing during your dreams,
And leaving chips of wax on my pillow.