Up and Down

“Zip me up,” she says.

Strange that a dress
requires help—
that vulnerability
is sewn into it.

The skin on her back
yields a tiny intimacy:
forbidden territory
he’s allowed to ride

for just a second.

She helps him
straighten his tie
or brushes off
the back of his coat,

and if, at the end
of the evening,
she helps him
with his zipper,

she slides it down, not up.

The poetry of David Lee Garrison has appeared in many journals and anthologies. Two of his poems were read by Garrison Keillor on his radio show, The Writer’s Almanac, and Ted Kooser featured the title poem of David’s new book, Playing Bach in the D. C. Metro, on his website, American Life in Poetry.