encore

by Steven Skoczen
tulips, red
softly wilted
fold fall not even
the wind

just a stem
now to weak
to hold
its prize
tiny teeth bacteria carried through warm and cold mold mycelium steals away
the last essence
undertakers and midwives
of the underground
summer heat eighty eight
bakes out
the last color
the last red
now brown
soil a dead worm
47 dead flowers
327 blades of grass
mycelia rain india
sulawesi
provence
iceland
greenland
columbia
boiling pot
spilled glass
pacific ocean
field
seeds six months of lonely
waiting
a small green sprout just enough daylight sun night shade night shade night shade night sun night shade night warming
64 73 55 52 81 46
32 36 41 51 64 34
reaching "I want to be a star", she said pulling a bud forms bulbous and pregnant
pressure built from rainwater and lust
cracks eggshells hiding yolks of color
peels apart
shows the inside, her insides to the sun
blossom this is my life
that you call color
full and I call to the bees,
the ones who will make
honey from my essence,
the drips and ebb of my life
one small curl northernmost petal two water has been pulled through a flutter at the base and
the well
is dry
a cross-wind giving
one,
she flings red
to the sky
another mid-afternoon heat a gust she pushes
a flash
into the air
ants stop,
gape
crickets
pause
their chirping.
the sky
is on fire.
it bleeds.
one lone pistil alone
a thing
of lust
wrinkled fading
still waiting
yellow green sucked away she understood inevitable fading a kink vein
pinched,
no more water
no more iron
no more
fold fall not even
the wind

just a stem
now to weak
to hold
its star
in orbit
tiny teeth bacteria carried through warm and cold mold mycelium steals away
the last essence
undertakers and midwives
of the underground
summer heat eighty eight
bakes out
the last color
the last red
now brown
soil a dead worm
47 dead flowers
327 blades of grass
mycelia rain india
sulawesi
provence
iceland
greenland
columbia
boiling pot
spilled glass
pacific ocean
field
seeds six months of lonely
waiting
a small green sprout just enough daylight sun night shade night shade night shade night sun night shade night
red breadhunger heatrattlesnake treadlightly breakdown strawberrysweet saidso stoplight ragehurt crimsonsight readheard bloodfalling scarletletter lustsoak rubyring scandalleather lovered saidlips applebite ledastray fight meatmuscle Shh... listen there,
inside the moment
there are footsteps
of flowers falling
like snowflakes
there is an echo of
autumn four hundred years
ago, still with us
the oak is still here still something new shh... listen
it is like this: the water flees back to the sky the bees, with luck, steal the pollen each slow spin of the planet a little less lust a little more husk folded slowly, gently back into her arms