gentle heat
(a jovan challenge poem)

a gentle heat perpetually burns in the depths of my soul
it came on unexpectedly
somewhere between a kiss
and a dare
or between the despair for the life of a murdered friend
and the unbridled passion unleashed in the dark isolation of a strangers’ apartment

you got under my skin
and now
no matter where i am
or what i do
i feel that heat
/simmering recognition of the undeniable link we share

it makes me feel your presence before you call my name
it alerts you of my approach before you sniff my fragrance
it causes me to sense your mood and sets your defenses on edge
calls out your fears of loss and being found unworthy,
and mine of abandonment
and yes,
of being sidetracked from my promise, my goal

and it frightens me
because it signifies my total lack of control
over what i feel for you and how i want to give you my forever
and it gives you hope that my forever is yours to hold

this gently heat has nothing to do with sensual release
or maybe it serves as the pilot light
always at the ready
always waiting and willing to ignite
so that simply the sight of one another across a room
causes the world to melt away
and no one exists for us except the other

when we touch
that heat eagerly jumps from spark to flame
engulfing us in the very heat of our own regard
and walling off the world
sheltering us for a time from our responsibilities

when we part
we are left with that gentle heat
a token and promise of what we share
/what we are loathe to name
our love

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