Sunday, April 08, 2007


"staccato of the dead"
by Barton Smock

the fog recalled sons lift their lifted arms and knock. sex
continues its silky swim in the eye hole of the coma
fish. dream-wearing shades slip the removed bridge of
a husband good for husbandry.
door, hung, on the dark. night washed lake.


the wading, tar-handed daughters in the father's beaded scope.
a decorated observer, the unmasked
vitiator of a vanished
watching. a mother's conjured house.
a distorted wife's backstroke of eulogy.


the design of monsters under a plain bed.
young men in gowns fall down stairwells,
spend their too long lives squaring blood
tape around pictures never framed. women hold beauty
over balconies, shaking clung hands from curtains. a blacker
mud fills the shoe of children treading water.


the womb's bait. puddle of hunger.
a rope knotted in the shower.
ghosts are not white. in fashionable bone heels, swimming
room to room, she is no accident. the potential sea, land
locked eye of the crocodile. the cloth tied head.


she brings him a cup of dirt. night
mares dry, he scratches at the window under his skin.
the bins in the abandoned studio ripple with trying.
whatever they've raised writes home on the pulled thread
of their palms. fog filled mouths, open.

Barton Smock is 30 years old, has 3 kids, 2 jobs, and 1 wife. He believes in marriage, cold winds, and Ohio.


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