The Butcher’s Bones

Crushing, bleak and break,
the mechanisms of my matter
are corroded by salt —
they are choked with sand.

Ripping, tear and rake,
the solutions of my mind
are dry from wind —
they are thieved by sun.

River, ocean and lake,
the brittle hull of my bones
arches for touch —
it is weathered by surf.

Yet I am tethered by the gull’s cry,
a wrinkled goodbye —
you are terrible in ropes and weaves and cuffs.

Hope pleads the darkness from the butcher’s eye,
lips feed a thousand lies —
I cannot conjure love enough or trust
      before time turns our hearts to dust.

The Memory

Aye, lover, it’s been long.
Minutes piled beyond counting.
The revolving nights work waves —
crash against nets, pots, and so much rust.
Tanned hands turn silken gray loops;
sweating brow,
but such bright auroras upturned at the sun,
and carven lines, rooted in ancestral deserts.
A soft call of morning stirs memory,
and the air’s easy caress touches high,
like fallen feathers and snow.

The Contract

Straighten the collar; accept the seat,
clasped hands, dark wood, damp ink.
Master of the course,
so uncertain, so wild the eye.
Hopes for fortune and light,
but suffering in the endless black.
Behind the curtain, a quick pulse,
and fingers in curls and laces.
Wait, the harpoon’s song, and so much red —
splintering wood, rushing salt.
But take her, in buttons and breeches,
in silk and wool.
Three corners in position.
The harbor without mercy sends her son.