The mis sing
From the tumourlike membrance of a tenuous re:
solve come tiny, edged-red tears, gilt gangrenous.
Sad, rainswept fixities slip, drizzle-sloffd
drown contracted sinuses. Uvula snaps at slow
swallows like a dangledamp mantis; bit dreams
of birdsong bleed deep into chipt chinabowl belly.
Sounds like a ringtone, soul-corrosive, uncoil, curd-
ling innerear. Some sly kin of naked pine’s pins
snuck in tonite & trickt these rabbitfeet into a heartsnare
to strangle w/ softspoken, unsought oughts and fond
condemnations – no prophylaxis against grief-pregnant
absence’s urgent, blind invasions. Something about the
evening’s lovely snarl must’ve hit the missing button,
so Saturday rises from the bath, Venus wrapped in
bruise of Monday’s Pluto-blue. Moonlite rattles
glass like a wrackt cough; sudden burn w/ red
dish of revery welters. Tongue writhes, phantom
feeling of a name I’ll never be safe to say again.
Fingers falter over the keys, killed insect clatter of
closed doors, indepth recessed. Broken keys to rooms
in hulderhouses torn down tender years ago –
doors to dead places no one living can let go.
A sharp salt blurt of blindsight, heartstirring
storylines scratch the sky, octoberbare branches
chokevines that, writhing, climb my name. Arid clime of vain
ache for peachsweet shoulders’ scent, adrift in empty headspace.
Time shudders as her missing limbs turn tourniquet,
until tonight begs morning to help her to forget.
inertia, his initials:
scritches not just
pen t, chatter not just
his teeth as he walks beside
a ministry of crows, a shepherding of flies
he turns it, this, his
to the stones.
Unmoved by stolen
meat, their earthen thirst remains
but this body bucks
and seeps, and gets all
swole, and won't stay
down in the hole scrabbled
from sod and gravel.
this is his theatre, see:
watch the winter kiss
make each subject
less and somehow
more, each a vivid
He stands close by, hood-eyed
scribing soft-corps spawn
chewing someone else's
gums with these dawn-clean teeth.
Seek and slam
Dullgray aft’s rough drag with the stark
wake of the goner score, sores of the shaken
stir the streets aching to blacken the package.
Redeye keyed-out pack of dirty pilgrim
sweaters, the sniffling sneakered hunt
snouts out closed faces and cold concrete
until a happy alley spreads treasures
for their play-coloured tenders. Quick
now kids: brassy blues do the corner
the cluster ducks, hastings skirts, flock
back to a grimy public head. Unfazed by
blue lights, diviners of deep venation
they prep with quick breaths, with tremulous
brevity, tapping powder from plastic shells, crouch
of humid forms exuding need, acrid anticipation.
Flint-fleck and rocketred glare. Amped Bics
and arcing Zippos. Frothing cook-song of
familial spoons, steel’s black badge
convex bellies small, stainless pregnancies
the kids clutch maternally - syncopated
orchestra of grunts and small seeking stabs
flagging bulbous bloodflowers. Horses surge
the gates, heavy heartfalls and itch-hot crescendos
as they play, violinists of the breaking veins.
Sean Moreland writes poetry, short fiction and scholarly non-fiction. He is founder and a fiction editor of Postscripts to Darkness (PstD), a serial anthology of weird fiction and art.