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You filled my mouth with copper, blood and brine.
Under your skirt, tongue in your moist split mound,

“t’avshya vosku hank’” — your velvet goldmine.
We’d been dancing, a waltz-grind. You had frowned

when the kissing stopped. Romance requires
restraint. Rise and fall of hips, amazing

pangs no nun ever warned about, desires
obscene. I didn’t notice how sopping

you had become until your thighs rested
on my neck. Gyumri is full of despised

daughters. I too am cast-off, suckerish
for the shamed. In with copper, brine and blood

I taste your mother-lode. Pleasure surprised
you. Your giggle was more than I could wish.

Gyumri is a city in northwestern Armenia where I lived for two years as a Peace Corps volunteer. Despite some progress in recent years women are still viewed as second-class citizens by many in that country. “T’avshya vosku hank’” (թավշյա ոսկու հանք) is the Armenian equivalent of “velvet goldmine,” Victorian slang for cunt.