Wednesday, April 1, 2020


Spell check suggests
I change it to

In the dark, in the wet, the process
is not the same, the stench of damp, the smell of rot,
crawls across your face, trying to decide
the best way in

My fingers cold and raw and very clean
Carcasses in the freezer, not yet skinned

She gently bangs her forehead
against the window, leaving a spot of grease
to gaze through at the world
as its surface wavers

The moths we discovered in the vault
Silvery fluttery things
nibbling at the weavings
I found them so pretty

Slow-motion trauma,
long-acting euthanasia.
Sometimes it takes your whole life
for the chemicals to take effect

That look on her face that says
more than her voice ever did

Things I said
with someone's stolen breath

In the dirt beneath a stone, beneath a log, beneath
a blanket of wet leaves, a splintered sheet
of plywood, a rotting board
slowly going soft, I roll
onto my back
expose my belly

A fistful of whelk shell beads
A few scattered teeth

My heart is freezing, she said,
when in reality

A flattened snake twisted into
a black figure eight
used as a bookmark

Flakes of dry skin cling to my face
If I scrubbed the mask away
would there be something left

The poison seeps up the food chain
 until it lodges in the liver
of a golden eagle, its feathery husk
stiff in the South Dakota snow

And I'm gobbling it too
feeling too bloated to move
trying to scrub the dishes clean
those hardened particles,
these scabs, this crust
I'm tempted to give up

This melody

I'll never

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