In the afternoon, I chop chives
from the garden. You skewer chicken
for the grill. I shatter a whole bottle
of sixty dollar pinot on the hardwood floor
and you laugh.
At night we perch glasses
at the ends of our noses,
on the bed stand book tower,
night caps and bookmarks
and the love poems of Neruda
spread wide across my chest,
knocked to the ground
in the blue light of late night programming.
In the morning I grind coffee,
you butter toast, we make a baby
pushed up against the refrigerator door.
We shake a jar of pickles
and all the mustard bottles
loose from the shelves.
In nine months she is born,
chomps down on your finger
with her first wet white tooth.
Privately, we call her little monstruo.
She babbles nonsense
and yanks hair from the tail of the cat. Mi corazón,
you say, and clutch at your chest.
You strap our baby to your back.
I pack a diaper bag, fret over bottles,
flight arrangements. We land at the base
of the western Andes, our smiles radiant
at the weathered locals, as pequeno
bounces her puffy feet in the air,
her toes slathered in sunscreen
while our own blisters swell and burst
on the upward climb.
At dawn, you build a fire
for tea. We mix oatmeal
for breakfast. I change the baby
and we climb all day
until the sun begins to leak from the sky,
and when we agree
that the altitude is sufficient,
we lay back in the red clay,
our little monster curled up on your chest,
as high and near as we can get
to thanking the stars, my hands
reaching out towards the dark blue
dusk of deep space, paying silent homage
to the gods of bliss domestica.