You, who saved me from hardening,
let me not harden now
but walk into the world, disarmed
yet escorted by these emissaries:
two ruby rose earrings, in echo
of years ago, when I passed my hand,
arm brushing my ear as I sobbed,
back to you, behind me in your chair
with your notes, glasses and clock.
You took my hand and brushed
my hair over my temple.
After each hour I always bought
some little thing. Today those earrings
— two ruby rose hard things
remind me not to harden.
Let me feel naked without them.