CAGED IN ETHIOPIA

"If I were caged,"
she says,
"I would be glory bound
in paint and feathers,
perfumed and pumiced
as a princess of another time,
encased in ribbons and silk,
shod pricelessly and gemmed,
singing, of course, a song
that in the din of every man's life
cannot be heard
but felt as a wind—
breathless words
smooth as joy
on your roughened cheeks."
--d.n. stuefloten