To This Country

of swollen rivers & lives dismissed like deformed dogs, I’ve come to drink your tears, to intrude on your raptured fog. There’s

a butcher, red vest open to the sun, knife in one hand, a basket of bull’s balls in the other. I order mine with mustard &

there’s Audrey with her yellow teeth & skin like putty who offers to wipe my slate clean & pours a cup of Darjeeling & whispers your name

as if it could bring you back whole: Josie…shush…Josie…& there’s a gunner in green fatigues nursing a baby &

a naked dancer spread-eagled on the kitchen table pulsing open & close the lips of her vagina & Henry the florist holding

a wreath of carnations & iris & lilies & a banner which reads: Smoke One For Her Sake…

In this country there are men dusting off their eyes for one last look & drinking urine & cursing the dark &

runners who turn downhill to avoid rain & a conductor tempting fate & stirring a restless pot of gunpowder & beans &

masked men who open their faces at midnight & women in the upstairs rooms who fiddle & sing & rub glass in their wounds.