I shall be leaving shortly,
elbowed out by the bend in a year.
While my full-tilt daughters that have learned to run
still bloody their knees on the stones of men.
They dream dreams that resemble my own, forlorn
in the nettles of credit, the dock of the bell…
Dropping the tails of bright lizards that flick
beneath the spines of seductive books.
My roses fell soft without cutting or choice…
Four daughters were hardier wilder sports:
Grafted on plans they draft divorce, with thyme for reading,
lavenders of children (discarded by storks)
How old, how shrunken this wizened age
that measures the girth of an unlived year.
I try to forget the dimensions of births,
untrammelled by visions opaque or clear.
Their passions are pruned; mine rampant yet
the hour-glass trickles sterile thin sand.
Their visions and mine no longer discern
whose pillow they water; whose shoulder they turn.
Before my mouth is stopped with clay
and cold ice glazes the lucid eye…
Will dreams gush forth from the trickling throat
and pith crack clean from the collar wish-bone?