TRICKLE, drops! my blue veins leaving!
O drops of me! trickle, slow drops,
Candid, from me falling-drip, bleeding drops,
From wounds made to free you whence you were prison’d,
From my face-from my forehead and lips,
From my breast-from within where I was conceal’d-press forth, red drops-confession drops;
Stain every page-stain every song I sing, every word I say, bloody drops;
Let them know your scarlet heat-let them glisten;
Saturate them with yourself, all ashamed and wet;
Glow upon all I have written, or shall write, bleeding drops;
Let it all be seen in your light, blushing drops.
This poem is part of Calamus. The Calamus plant is associated with Kalamos, who was a mythological god. Kalamos lost and mourned over his lover Karpos, a young man. This establishes a homosexual theme throughout the Calamus poems.