In 2002 I met a girl named Angela Kang. She was beautiful. I was a freshman in college. She was a senior. I took her to the spring banquet my college put on at a hotel on the PCH near Huntington Beach. She wore a floral dress. I wore a belt-buckle with a detail from van Eyck’s “Arnolfini Wedding Portrait.”

I haven’t spoken to or seen Angela in the better part of seven years. Last I heard she was living in southern California with her husband and child. I don’t know how much she still writes. Of all the poets I’ve ever personally known, she is far and away the best.

He Is Only A Man

My husband is all right angles.

Sleeping, he resembles an ancient king.
Awake, he is a flurry of motion.

His skin is pale,
and softer than any man
has right to be.

In our bed,
I blow paths in his hair.
I am Moses parting the sea in two
and my breath travels across the white divider.

I trace my fingers across his chest.
I am blind, and I read the words
I love you in the Braille of his heartbeat.

He was once a boy,
licking sugar from a cookie.

He was once a young man,
taking a drag from a cigarette.

I know him without words.

Our love is a bird.

And he is only a man.

– Angela Kang


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