Knave of Swords

rus­tled, prone in
to ca­coph­ony, O knave
of swords
gagged by
sharp iron down gul­let
you
can­not shout around
your na­ture there must first
be time for de­his­cence de­spite the
all around voices
din­ning to obliv­ion like trees
pil­lo­ried by the wind.

Tilt of chin back, mouth spat
tongue, two fin­gers reach in
for a long pull. Gusped belly full 
of air for even
the mute some­times 
try to scream.
Meanwhile,

There is no sound save for 
the taste of blood and
an­tifreeze. A cragged face
in a mud pud­dle Salt from
the sky Burned 
parch­ment My fin­gers
feel the click­ing knob of
my father’s CB
the squelch throbs in­ner
ear. If there was
time to lis­ten for a tardy epiphany.

                                        I awaken with
                                        a pis­tol bar­rel
                                        in my mouth.

Another poem that’s mostly about in­ef­fec­tive com­mu­ni­ca­tion. The Jack/​Page/​Knave of Swords is the tarot card for com­mu­ni­ca­tion, and I liked the im­age of him as a sword swal­lower.

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