after Richard Wilber, The Beautiful Changes

On wading, a quiet brook—hips flanked
with sweet woodruff and wild violets
the smooth glide of flesh on flesh
a lover transforms from prairie to marshland
wildflowers to lakebed, the fresh taste of you,
your valleys so soft—your uplands so bountiful.

Sweetheart, flow beautiful as dawn turns to day
the way a lily lightens as it opens
petal after petal; to float on the surface
the same greening and just as beautiful
as every other part of the floating water world
until one day you too bloom. Your hands soften

into cups to hold dew. Your breasts float.
Your belly domes and does not belong to you alone;
a melody changes—the singing a lullaby
in ever softer ways—a wish—a surrender
back to the first touch and all is lost
to the flowing, the blossoming, the wonder.