Kirk D. Keen


often and often he thought of gnarled boughs and sitting under them,
eating rose hips and lemon and watching the fetches of sparrows
and willows chasing the dream of the sun and her violets.
his eyes were bruised, and he argued with the embroidery of his memories.

i remember you,
and your prating kisses and self-denial,
(framed in oak and cherry)
stretched tight and caught in hooks.
i see the brushes,
and your fingerprints on the mirror in
five-finger choreography
sing to me in doleful

his hands seized and dug deeper into the night soil, and he pulled
himself under in holocaust and spasm.
still after these chapters of years the smell of her breath
is woven into his collar and scarves, raw and unhewn as hazel branches.

your hush resonates as a bell, and asleep
i can count your eyes blinking and hear them slightly snapping,
as if tiny bones cracking like kindling.
i loitered in your head, then,
played with the tiny pixies and coaxed
the angels out of their mouse holes.
we curled up in your lap,
curled up in the curve of your hip and listened
to the stories of your pulse and
your violin pulls beneath your skin.

am i your paramour,
the horizon your dawn wakes up on
or the eye of your needle?
or am i your needle bruise
ravishing your white arm
yellow and green like swamp water?

he writhed in his naivety and gnawed on the implacable stone tablets he placed
willingly between him and his reflection of her. his piety put red welts on his neck
and sang doleful psalms and hymns about death and destruction as it
pulled him slowly drowning further into lewd thoughts of white picket fences
and ritalined children and lawn mowers and nine-to-fives
and continuing to live the white manís dream.

but i need your touch;
i need the quivered coveys of your
fingertips like feather-tips across my skin.
i want their gossip and their morse-
graffiti spray-painted on my back.
are you of mary, are you of nails and death and wood?

but he whispers, uncaring of the terror beating his ribcage
like a house frame;
a hissing tiny fairing to the bark of the faerie willow:

teeth of brimstone or breath of
halos i donít care,
suffuse me with your lightning;

i donít need these nails
and toothpick crosses.

Location: College Station, Texas
Occupation: Theatrical Electrician at Texas A&M University

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