Murder in the leaves moonlight bends to trespass
flees capture by the same path my wife’s conquest
accessed, lending to its myth clues I follow
with haste, riding behind her to the gallows
over h(a)unted ground and wastelands men condemn,
wanting nothing more than to face love’s hangman.
Rusting laurel wreathes necks, leaving the hangman
anxious to see his due, what left hands condemn
rights and freedoms forfend, sending to gallows
once-righteous men whose women’s loose hearts trespass
all rule(r)s, like muses who refuse to follow
law just to tempt sentence, silenced by conquest.
Crows crowding under clouds wonder how conquest
leads me to leave behind my wits and follow
my spirit to this place none but shades trespass,
this grave sunlight d(r)i(v)es in, hiding from hangman
and shadow, building nightly his own gallows
as frightened families do, li(v)es li(n)es condemn.
Unsoothed by truths too often said, I condemn
my heritage and wring from my head gallows
of gallant patriarchs my parents’ hangman
of heredity had me accept, conquest
conflating failure and fable, the trespass
of which I must shed if fate I must follow.
Southwest of where the sun sets, where winds follow
voices to tongues bereft of song, lips trespass
triumph and tyranny’s border, their conquest
wrest(l)ing from stoic eaves what split trees condemn,
divided by their witness, my wife’s hangman
relies on neither oak nor ash for gallows.
So with cornsilk-fine precision, twain gallows
and lightning-thrown sp(l)in(t)e(r)s, toward her hangman
my steed heeds my ears as guide while I condemn
him whose execution took my bride, ‘Follow
that canticle to its enchantress!’ conquest
wedding death’s mystery, darkness I trespass.
From within a cavern carved where tracks trespass
crookèd crossroads and collapse, cackles follow
lyrics as I dismount, witched by what’s condemned.