God, I have not forgotten you
For sending all my children into your old ice boxes.
I remember that goat
You let them follow with a compass,
Those wooden wheels you let them roll
And break their first silence on.
I watched those beautiful kites you let them glide,
Their hearts all balls of string.
When they were young and unfucked
And old friends with the moon
Spreading its cream over their lips
As they slept, you came in
The window with the light
Like a cat on their necks.
When you want, the dark honey
Of their breath you store
In the catacombs of your lungs.
Alone and licked, their dreams
All rat-bitten and full of fever,
They remember your words,
Droppings on the white sheets.
Where are the dead?
In my arms, their panties pulled high,
Their eyes and teeth all small and even.
I remember your sadness, too.
A pan of wash water.
I threw it out in the chicken yard each evening.
I wanted my love to be an orchard,
Rows of thornless berries.
I wanted my love
To be death for the suffering.
Like you, I knew a woman once.
She was carrying a child.
One night she cut it
Out like a vine
With her husband’s razor.
I didn’t want you
To forget my love
Is a dark and rotten fruit on the ground,
A deathbed for your dreams,
And I don’t know you, now,
Your sadness or your mark
On everything we bury.