Draft in the dining room

It’s a dark house, grey walls and
shadows—corners collect dust
unseen, untouched
the children pale in late afternoon
valleys below blue eyes
dark as unlit halls.
You’d think it was always raining
the way time dripped on, echo
of infinite drops
ringing in the ears of the living.
Dinner is silent, save for
abhorrent thoughts spilled over
three courses, a black river of
I don’t love you anymore
winds through fractured china, thick
rings like dried ink where it rested
around bowls and milk glasses
leaching into the grain of the wood
a permanent animosity stained
into family oak, a memory
gone up in flames.

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Feeding In October

We laugh with mouths like crows, gaping screeches
into cold air. Oil slicks cutting through autumn like
steel through water. Easier to laugh than to cry, a cadence
of moans amplifying into shared sky. Beaks wide and split
left to right so no one could ever tell the difference
between smile and grimace. Six eyes point north
and we fly—seek something to laugh about.

The Bard At Night

You were loud as the moon
words echoing through half-light
-a gaping chasm of nearly pitch black.
Your laugh struck me like leaves in autumn,
auburn stains, pristine pointed edges
for weeks, until you could melt
into the earth, washed away
with old papers or a memory
or a bit of rain.
Silver-skinned and long like everyone’s
favorite tree, shadowed in night
and always out of reach
telling stories
a narration of winds and wilds
while I made my journey to you.

Sun Falls Quiet In Town

The warm season incites a madness
in warm bodies
chins upturned toward sky, goading rain or
something sweeter
dry tongues flick arid air
empty of everything but talk
of the weather
or how the earth can’t possibly
be round
the street – akin to sweat – waves
as beings pass, cross thresholds
to escape heat
crawl into cold sheets
wearing only sticky flesh
caress the fibers with calloused palms
and pull a comforter over themselves
anyway.
Fall asleep
sweating out the summer,
dreaming of something sweeter.

Four Winds

I met a woman
and she was the eye of a storm.
The storm was ruthless,
slapped the sea with open palms
screamed titan winds and
flooded me and you.
But she was calm there
at the center of everything
not a hint of a smile on her omnipotent mouth.
And in an empty, stoic trance she
turned our world inside out
the lotus
in the middle of the storm.

A Forest: Unwooded

Have you ever met a woman
like hickory?
Slender hands touch the sun and
she can’t think of earthly things.
She can sway without
lifting root
bear the sky without
shrugging

standing somber among the felled
she can stare – cold –
browned autumn eyes
fall, jarring the
boldest men
quaking the
stillest earth.