Robert Bohm

1949. BOY IN BED

Mouth open the old tailor
with large nostrils sleeps on the second floor
of another house beyond the hedge,
a fat beetle throbs on a rose petal
in a dream the boy doesnít want to have,
one yard and then another and afterwards
the billboard behind which in a gully
a ripped-open shirt shows
the trembling slope of the drunkís hairy belly,
next door the churchís stone steps lead down
toward the garbage can in the next lot
near the barbed wire fence where the honeysuckle reeks,
the boy rolls over in bed, pushing
away hot sheets
while at his skinís fringes
the wind rubs tree leaves, smearing
night over them, until the darkness,
knowing the feel of crevices too narrow
for even a motherís hair strand to explore,
oozes forward in quiet waves
and splashes, an ocean, against the shore,
not a real shore, but that beach
where out there ends and he begins
while the ugly sand crab fidgets in its teeny hole
inside his penis, and now there is a sound of weeping
as he learns that nothing he possesses or ever will possess,
no thing or feeling or devotion
to any being, will protect him
from this hunger, which wants
the night to lap softly over him, then seep
into him through body openings, or are they
tunnels in the earth through which the mole crawls
with nothing in its mouth, except the stars which shine so brightly
above the trees?

Robert Bohm is a poet and culture writer. He was born in Queens, New York. His 2007 Uz Um War Moan Ode is available from Pudding House Press. Other credits include two other books, a chapbook and work published in a variety of print and online publications. More information on Bohm's work can be found at his blog, Lethal Injections for the Conditioned Mind, and his website, Unburials: The Writer as Graverobber. Click here for a selection of online publications from the last few years.

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