Brother on Brother
A jay landing in wire grass, 
the tiki hut’s floor of wet tar— 
prickly pears strung
on a line, blurred and gummy—
then, cast on my wall, 
the silhouette of a branch
drifting; the after-air 
of the opening door.
My skin, inescapable. 
Outstretched on my belly,
I held onto the raised 
stitching of the bedspread.
Waking from dream, 
I knew those were your 
hands stealing away
and the laughing.
Red lights, smeared,
wobbling in a circle:
they hung over me, materializing 
from a cloud, or a thicket:
flesh, long-enfolded, 
was unflapped: 
the sour smell of
moist grooves exposed.  
What leapt inside me 
when the bell’s mallet struck 
wetly against my palette?
Who’d stop the ringing?
Afterwards I’d make a plan
to escape the bitter drops:
I’d sleep with my face 
in a pillow and try 
to eat the fibers.  
I’d be immovable.
You watched over me:
sandpaper, gorge—
fold fallow plow—
whispered, I could kill you
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