No Touch Of Feather

Certain places, mold on little dolls, square meters, bolts of black blood … the villages and towns, the rat run

Birds afraid to land, no touch of feather

Eyes stitched in a smile by white hands reaching down

Open doors, cold kitchens

Metal studs in my brain

I can feel them turning inside, ripping veins in tissue masquerading around, falling down, changing with unfair charge

Do you want to know how it feels as they cut, back and forth

Not like Frankenstein or the kid who had the top of his skull sawed off and a metal plate screwed deep inside where his mother and father abide, no nothing like that … nothing like that

These are dark places, where it is cold or hot, muddy or dry as bone

Where students on dirt floors sing for supper without tone

Mouths spilling sand

The marriage of garbage and flies crossing the bridge while a country burns

Everyone miserable, stiff like life in a second-hand market

Where people are always on sale, stalls of cold looks, glasses filled with pulled teeth

Business stinks

The gays and poets have long since lost their way

There’s always the lone man, mumbling, in a dirty blanket from a lion hunt or half-naked with big feet, and kids are crying and people lie upon the ground like trees in a felled forest

I have a long list of names, but they all boil down to the same acid on the bottom of my pot

8,372 means nothing to you

I thought the same a long time ago, but I have changed my tune

8,372 dig their way through the earth and come out the other side and along the way they discover gold to repair their teeth and they drink pure water in untapped caverns to keep their skin intact, ready to be made into a map or lamp or sandals fit for a monk

They are my boarders and they never say a word in the harsh light, too afraid of the sweating tiger swinging the hammer and claw

They are silent in the attic, in the walls, waiting for night to fall so they can beg, weep, pray once again, and, of course, I’m all ears at 3:00 a.m.

4 thoughts on “No Touch Of Feather

  1. Your boarders are relentless. There is something about that 3 am hour. It’s like the trumpet has been blown and all dread has been released. This is an incredible poem – something to be read and experienced many many times.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I know it’s not on the same scale, so the balance of misery still hangs lopsided in your direction, but at least the people who bother you at 3am aren’t your fault. The hurting ones who bother me at 3am are my fault.

    Liked by 1 person

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