Gloss On a Shiv

Gloss on a shiv, a crimson brush
Delacroix’s viscous palette, Lady Liberty,
the butcheress, laps a liquid broth – vampiric
tubercolic, fitful, coughing wave, impediment
to the necessary receipt of sacraments,
the digestion of de Goya’s print, blackened
teeth sunk into the hank of a tempter’s thigh
contusions spreading like the Roman legions
in Gaul.

There in a winter crypt,
woolen fingers scratch at frozen lids,
the promise of unChristian resurrection

Glory in Valley Forge
for the gravediggers, the theatrical
presentation of officers and French men
imposing rigid speculations on impending


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