Kneeling Before the Gate’s Keeper


Mouth’s an ashtray the way you put it out,
smoking folks with your burns as though
you were the first to start a war with words.
Kneeling before the gate’s keeper,

now you’re soft facing Babel’s towering
taper. This tongue of flame’s about
to taste your flavour, take your breath as if
it’s vapour papering over

with prayers haze of breaking days sunset mouths
opening like freeways taking
limousines in plays of safety, paced routes
traced out for motorcades made more

          disgraced by my waxwork jaws racing ’bout
          to drag down damn hard both this torched


candle’s ends. To scar ill with literate
skill all your quips, those comments dripped
until you felt unfit to spit answers.
To “#cancel” or be “#cancelled” are

just myths, bullshit without justice or even
any justification. Put
away your unimpressive attempts at
poetics and sit, amateur,

at this table or under it. Devout
as you still are now and we all
once were, to being heard, not understood.
There’s a grace to falling upwards

          mistaking offers of climax your doubt
          goes broke for all the dough this world


can afford to withhold chokes. How about
before my hand opens those doors
that perception of yours my own ignored
comes to terms with unsought seekers?

Those whose weakness is being found by worse
liars than they are to be proud
performing what others only rehearse.
Of course, no reward you deserve,

but trophyless, how ever will your loud
appeal for the crowd’s sympathy
get heard? Never have I gotten hard, vowed
to honour, or let enter whores

          my garden soiled itself over when gouged
          by blaze of eyes hollow as yours.