She Gives me Amber - by Staceyann Chin

So she gives me beads of amber not blood red garnets

for the heated love of a man

but cool yellow stones

for friendship, she says

Dependable like prayers

strung together like a rosary

never responding to touch

no matter how many Hail Marys

Hard rocks that bite

if I press too hard

but kiss me gently

if I finger her gently

Sometimes they catch the sun

fanning it into a flaming fire

beautiful and hot like her breath

when my palms are pressed up

against her making her beg

please... don't... stop

please, don't stop


And when the night comes

she goes home to her husband

cooking for him

laying down

for him

beds covered with white cool sheets

and as she lies

she remembers the day

smiling as he enters

feigning pleasure at his coming

Then she gives me

bloodless chips of earth

to wear around my neck

my albatross

a reminder

that stolen jewels

can never really be