We listened from a distance
 for your chrysalis to speak.
To give us intel, a reason,
some sign we could clutch
tight against our own chests,
to make sense of it all. Why
 your days uncoiled in flash,
bang, and scarlet blossoms,
a mountebank’s pink plume
of smoke. How in a moment,
you metamorphosed from
 shiny still-shy unfurling
butterfly, to silent pupa.
There’s no viaticum for you,
just dirt. But we listen, still.

The Failure of Lucidity

The dream is always the same—
the shadow and Sirocco,
a looming blood rain,
the distant pennant swirling,
flung northwest, the flagstones
coarse, grating the soles
of naked feet. And on a Moorish
balustrade, your sun-swept hair,
bronze breasts I never reach.

Study Time

Angel baby yeah, yeah
Rocking purple hot pants
on the boulevard. Hey sugar—
need a date? I’ve got
a yearning and a hank
of rope for you,
some duct tape too,
in case you wriggle loose.
And when you’re nicely
Juiced and tucked away
Behind your painted skin,
I’ll read you psalms
and from the prophets
too, until you shudder
have sweet mercy on
your jangling ears,
your tinkling heels,
your stretched out haughty
neck line, and your
wanton eyes. Crawl
deep inside your leopard
purse and call for help—
no signal, ‘cause
I’m not one of your usual.