I am sorry if I want to tie you to a tree. But it would be a fine, fine, tree. A tree strong with ridges like stone and a way within itself that fights both breezes and birds like it can’t stand what every other tree lets themselves be, become. Never ending victims: the shame of trees. It hangs its branches when nobody is looking.
I am looking.
Your knees inch closer to the dirt. Your pectoral muscles breathe against the inside of your skin. Sweat made from fear, lust.
You will not know this but I will feel a lot like that tree. I will feel okay with tying you to it. Naked. Did I forget to mention that? That you would be naked? Or maybe you would be wearing overalls. Just overalls. Nothing else. Dependable denim. Simple and complicated at the same time. Overalls try to convince everyone otherwise, but we all know better, don’t we? Overalls are not fooling anyone. Stupid, dumb overalls.
The leather binds your skin, doubling it where it should not. You writhe. It’s nice. I can almost taste the pain on your face.
I want to.
We are so far from everything. It’s because of the tree. Where I had to go to find it. This very strong tree. That’s what I tell myself but I know it’s just how we have always been. There is an extreme distance between us that has become so much the norm I feel like I should be looking down on you from a tree that towers over another tree that towers over this tree. You need to be small or invisible. You need to barely exist.
Your hair, pointed with sweat, hides your eyes. I make you hold still while I suck them. I make you hold still with sharp. I make you hold still your hair in my mouth. My tongue on your eyes tasting sweat or crying.
You should not be banging your head begging me to cut you down. You should know better. You should know it is not time yet. You should know I am just getting started. You should know. You should.
I am sorry if I will be laughing. I am sorry that I will not cut you down. I am sorry that when I finally do, you will not know it is now your turn.
Even when I toss you the sharp.
Even when I toe the pile of fresh straps.
Even when I put my back against the tree.
Even when I give you my hands and say, “Now you.”
Instead you will climb the tree over this one and the tree over that one until my size becomes familiar. I will fumble with my overalls. I will not be able to take them off.