For Nine Days Does the Anvil Fall: Eight

Still wet, the fresco sweats tongues
of leather dyed with echoes,
rituals not quite right thrown
across walls like shadows, casts

torn in feverish plight fall
to ankles, howled impatience
exasperates, whipping quips
against eaves as masochists

initiate victims, lungs
forgiven wrong timing, for
not breathing rite, souring songs
in their soaring as though blown

          from wounds wide opened, one’s wants
          feel bled, how marrow fills bone.


Invalids’ infirmaments
in furtive winnowing grown
fructuous gloat in their groan
assertive, enthusiasts

to full bloom withering choice
choose this chamber’s reflections
instead of a cure to bruise
their agonies’ choruses,

metallic blues circumstance
speculative, circumspect,
as moods improve all but once
in this room’s attempts to own

          its downed inhabitants, ones
          for whom extravagance moans.