by Doug Ramspeck


& the wind from the passing cars is a clamor
of stink     

& the vultures with their blood-red heads arrive
in the anesthetic heat of morning     & soon come the plosives 
of pecking     

& the boys press their faces to the upstairs window 

& father stands
on the back porch & studies the skewered light of day

& mother sleeps with her eyes closed like shriveled fruit

& father dreams that the twigs that hold the day moon in place 
are taut as piano wires     & father imagines that the moon 
will have to bite off its own leg to be free

& the moon hangs in the sky as vapor     hangs in the sky 
like a bruise & a fever & a detached eye 

& the raccoon sings here is how i hold myself 
in abeyance

& the heat bullies the morning air 

& the raccoon sings here is my skin coming loose    

& the boys sing of poking the raccoon with a stick

& the vultures sing 
when the cars come we will lift our bodies into air