Habeas Rabies

Before the daily visitation
I sharpen a lily’s stem on the stone portico
to record the dictation of my defects.

By night wings of isinglass minister
their melodies about my ears,
their shards spangle my flesh with stars.
They lid my eyes, flutter, unsettled,
their panes purpled with my fault.

I catch myself starting to disappear.
I start counting myself down,
all but the pins and needles. How fast
I was I needed to be faster.

Demise, demise, my child, begins
at my feet’s gnarl and cramp
that grasp the world turning to smoke—
not that you’d notice the raw wonder of me,

or how they pull strand after strand away
trailing after them, lifting me off,
less and less, lighter all the time. All the time

lost in the multitudes of their chorus wheeling
through round after round of beatitudes.

Photo by Ehimetalor Akhere Unuabona/Unsplash


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