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Deer Knife

April 2022, no. 441

Deer Knife

April 2022, no. 441

When life hides behind the mulch
     of what lives, can they expect more
                    than this refusal to hold each other in the open?

Lemongrass floss between molars,
     you wish for foxes. You tell me you don’t wish for them
                    any novel way, no way – no

word – being more or less novel. You wish for
     foxes in the impossible neutral, piss baroquely on
                    the coal heap around the young lime

whose illness we’ve yet to diagnose
     though we yoke answers to the answer.
                    At the rim of the secret’s crater, you balance

on your head and imagine water
     to slant, migrating, because it must. But listen: the Pacific
                    gull that slit childhood, bombing the ocean, never resurfacing?

It did resurface. What hides from us
     leaks what we do not see. Brothers speaking together
                    underwater. Brothers holding each
other’s breath.

I have hidden from you. Keep counting. Keep grinding
     memory’s deer knife through gritty, mulched
                    soil to clean it. When we hold each other, may it not
be the afterlife. Here is a public

garden – a body lighting lemongrass
     the breeze wicks from airy, flax clothes
                    as hunger wicks a fox from another den.

From the New Issue

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