These are the days that call
for a bottle of Sonoma zinfandel,
that beg for the black pepper,
for the anise. Flavors that at least
warm the mouth. I savor each sip
for as long as I can, until the
astringency makes my tongue
feel like cotton.

Snow again today,
then rain, then snow.

These are the days I need
a woman without edges, without
unexpected corners that could
tear or scrape. She might taste like
black pepper and anise,
maybe sandalwood incense,
or blackcurrant with a hint of cinnamon.
All flavors to delight in and hold.

We could ride out
the gathering storms in bed,
getting drunk, reading poetry.
From a distance,
the black type on
the white paper
looks like animal tracks
on the freshly fallen snow.