barefoot cemetery blues
i sit in front of and to the side of
the stones with their icy shine
in the fading echoes of the sun
twilighting over the trembling trees
tracing shadows like the dry dirt
cracking away from the marble
reflections of remembrance.
the silk flowers rip
and the dry flowers rot
as the west nile wind
winds around headstones
and i scratch imaginary itches.
insects sound under a purpled sky
as a shadowed spider
swings and spins its web,
working to wait.
i see their faces in absent stares
with shut eyes and sinking skin,
the wind whips a red balloon
in random rages on a redder
ribbon that is pulled down
and snaps up and is pulled down
and snaps away from the
decorations of music boxes
and blown out candles,
baby shoes, virgins, flags,
weathered pictures and weeping wreaths
that once asked attention
for those who needed none,
fade in the light and in the night.
i hear silent nursery rhymes
sneaking from lidded cribs
in lonely laments and requiems,
roared and whispered,
riddled with remnants of withered roots.
i hear them singing showtunes,
humming while they put on lipstick,
and praying as they clean their fingernails.
i close my eyes for stoneless sight
and feel them all in the grass between my toes.
you don't bother to explain your techniques.
the unconscious system of translating
yourself to skin and bone, oscillating
mid-body, develops daily. instincts
lead you to weave liquid to fingerprints,
folding and patterned, to a design
never imagined or matched. you refine
cells to eyelids and toenails of mint
condition, small silk spins of protection,
and filter sounds to somber echoes for
sculpted ears, fashioned in the style of your
own. you're an artist of flesh, perfection
built from emotion and blood that you meld
within as weight - your hidden canvas held.