The Tragic Conversion of Keith Richards

Published in The New Hampshire Review

Your scalp is Japanese vellum. The weak green tea
catches the dawn light. Im afraid to look outsideits bound

to be wordy. Without conduction branches grow the song-
birds cuttlebone. Your knees appear and disappear

like the cheeks of a brass orchestra. When I used
the champagne flute as a spyglass I noticed jets

leaking through the bruised ceiling, their motion
prompted by the barometers paraphrase of spring.

Yesterday at the Emperors Arboretum
you put up with the red parrots hirrient aria

like a trooper. Must we wear handcuffs just to kiss?
In the reptile corral you spoke in seamless

heptameters. It calms the Komodo, you said,
knocking off the wrinkles in my kincob kimono

with your bare hand, dyed white, ghost white for the moon
execution. Must we wear blindfolds just to fuck?

Your belly shows signs of stilt-walking. Your mother
must have protractored our citys famous floods, with you

laced to her raw back. Your view was departure.
I put my teeth to your ear and sing like a rusty bird.

last updated Tuesday, June 06, 2006 @ 6:04 PM