Temptation

Whispered to Lucifer (Lucille Clifton – Two Poems)

lucifer six-finger

where have you gone to

with your swift lightning

 

oh son of the morning

was it the woman

enticed you to leave us

 

was it to touch her

featherless arm

was it to curl your belly

 

around her

that you fell laughing

your grace all ashard

 

leaving us here in

perpetual evening

even the guardians

 

silent     all of us

going about our

fathers’ business

 

less radiant

less sure

 

Eve’s Version

smooth talker

slides into my dreams

and fills them with apple

apple snug as my breast

in the palm of my hand

apple sleek apple sweet

and bright in my mouth

 

it is your own lush self

you hunger for

he whispers     lucifer

honey-tongue