I Dreamed Freddie Mercury's Legs

Brian Simoneau

straddled the Strait of Gibraltar:

                on a raft crossing one body

of water to another, crest

                and trough propelling me under

the arch of his crotch, tight white shorts

                lustering like polished limestone,

I heard voices call from the rocks,

                from cracks in the cliff face, voices

rising toward harmony, hunting

                notes to chorus the raging winds

of his own, his pitch and timbre

                gathering birds, gathering fish,

gathering ships from vanishing

                harbors, as if any body

could shield, could shelter, another

                amid such perpetual squall,

and as the waters rose and rose

                he sang and sang as if, I thought,

to push them back, his song a moon

                whose gravity could make new tides,

his song a force to lift the land

                from itself, but I recognized

in the moment before waking,

                paddles ripped from my hands, the rush

of water an untuneable

                static, I recognized his voice

as lamentation, his body

                a crescendo of grief or love

or both, one hand lifting to make

                a fist above the surging waves

and grip as long as possible

                what little time remains for song.


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