For the Goners

I.

 

For the new coffee stains on shirt sleeves,

next to scars, under cloth,

 

For the balls of cord, like wine,

pulling their full—all wrapped up,

 

a new warren of honeyed lust.

 

II.

 

For the standing, too old, to behave so,

for the words dribbling from my mouth;

 

For the sign dissolving off a highway,

in graffiti, too calm, for its own good.

 

III.

 

For the managed lisp, a coiling of tongue,

for the craved dribble,

 

a coven of once-fettered meetings, undone.

 

IV.

 

For the crow of an alt-country poet,

who gives me strength—

 

In bar tops, with stools, with smoke in my teeth,

and beer on my hands,

 

Wading out into an ocean of lovers,

I hold each eye offered long enough.

 

For the sunbeams loosed into a room;

for the Gods staked to ice-cold Formica.

 

V.

 

For the skins we wear, stained with coffee

and bloody bar napkins—

 

For the forgotten so easily—I wear it so well,

on my sleeves, next to heart, and tea leaves—

 

For the kisses pressed into every petal—

 

a newly-sordid past shared with impartial moisture, now cleaved;

 

For the Goners, this is for you, and good enough, for you, indeed.

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