she has happened to me, here
at this liminal split and tear,
this, Persephone, cast pools of oat and salt in her palms.
where before a sulphurous haze, now
her autumn palette spills and how
it quivers, the animate unexpected.
see how ambivalence balks at her motions
the float of her words across cochlear oceans
rupture this net that chokes me, gently.
by the waxing wednesday dusk,
she peels from me this threadbone husk
and pools our shadows to drain through spring.
were my knuckles raw enough
to scrape her features from the bluff
i might believe myself the artist and she the motion of my brush
but one away from the very last
what’s left of me bound to the mast
of this the coral graveyard once a sinking ship
desolate, the sweep, these ribbons of ash
streaks burning in submarine streams, the flash
of impulse imploding my will to surrender
to her, in the shallows, stirring the silt
the cracks in her cadence, her bruised southern lilt
a siren’s aching pull to warmer waters
it is i who am still bathed in dust
counting pennies black and chips of rust
cowering before her, behind dirty fingers
afraid that the venom about me still lingers.