i am defining
nothing but myself here
beneath this cold white sun

i am placing my right hand
over the eyes
of a child i never had and
only one of us casts
a shadow

it’s not an
admission of guilt
it’s an act of salvation

look at this land

a grey stretch of valley between
defeated hills
and all of these burning houses
that people call home

all of the pain stored away
but never forgotten

more than enough to bring
de chirico to his knees
and still none of us leave

i know these roads

i understand
that they all go somewhere
but i have been losing my way
for the past twenty years

i have outlived
the burning girl and the
drowning boy and any number
of anonymous women
beaten to death by the
fists of love

and there are those who
tell me that every action holds
the potential for beauty
and i give them the memory
of my father digging his
own grave with a coffee spoon
and a broken bottle

i give them
the minister’s wife raped

and thrown naked
from a bridge

and the weight isn’t in
the words
but in the events they

it’s in the color of the sky
as it hangs
like a brilliant shroud

nothing is so beautiful
that it can never be

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