after "Virgin and Child" (anonimo) 15th century
I think I can see everythingJesus's
open mouth, Mary's nipples dripping milk.
But the painter hides her feet.
The space behind stone drapery
is like space in studio photographs:
nothing under the table, behind the screen, around the corner,
no heart in the cardboard chestno light in the painted-on diamond.
I want her feet like dirty succulents close to the ground,
the few dark hairs like the sign for kisses at the end of a letter.
The sole swells and pushes off, the heel lifts,
hard heel that must always return.
The arch is netted with blue veins so far from the heart
they forget about home, and the heart forgets
until her toes curl their soft blades into the dirt.