Individual Voices / Natural Forms

Winter, 2006

Doren Robbins

The Virgins

They stood inside the entry, ninety-one degrees at night*he crawled out of a window, he ran in the dark*the two fourteen year-olds, mostly they were all tongues and mouths*he worked and worked and she allowed one finger inside her bathing suit bottom*standing there who knows how long, the two of them dripping, standing without fatigue*she surprised him and slid her hand up his baggy legged shorts, their fingers surged*the wet smell of them in the entry still in his mind easily again*and he kissed her legs, the front of her thighs, and her ankles, all that he could reach*until her astonished mother broke them apart hitting them with a broom and stopping only to slap the back of her daughter's head. Still in his mind, still hard thinking of her sweat thick hair sticking to her cheeks and the roll and fold of her lips and the vaginal throat and the song soaking inside of it. He was actually figuring the chances of whether the deer really does lie down with a virgin, as in the old tapestries, as in the mind that made a good allegory, in the mind awake with the animal smell and the tenderness*and it could only be good to be so close to a deer, and to have red and purple dahlias there for the deer to eat, because they are the colors of a deer's mouth, and therefore a kind of twin, growing beside the virgin's lap, where the deer lowers its head—so in the allegory the deer is also her lover, and there is no truly crazy lady swinging a broom and then resting it so she could pull her daughter's hair, and suddenly start shrieking in Spanish and Hungarian, and then pleading to some god about this, and this, and spitting at a deer, and knocking a rubber plant over, and sweeping dirt onto the Mexican tiles, spattering dirt onto the primrose heads and the bathing suits.