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My Sisters of the Moorland; Millefleur; Glad Days by Damon Hubbs

My Sisters of the Moorland


It’s possible I died standing up,

twelve swallows to the wind

each one like a mansion in the sky. 


As a boy the sky leaned on me,

and I wrote tiny tales in tiny books

and dressed our kingdom in toy colors.


Before I walked invisible

my sisters read my skull,

each bump and swell a tug-of-war


of howling yellow and arsenic green,

my attic-dwelling and unmade bed—

organs of wonder and credulity unseam’d.


It’s possible I died standing up,

the wool comber combing my wool

in soothing syrups


my sisters of the moorland

fording rivers,

each finger like a crayfish

in the barrows of my black crown.





past the market square

we talk of the forest’s undressing,

how clear spots beget clear spots—

the runnels like mothers’ sighing.

When you’re in a mood

of optimism

and terrible forgetting

you say the forest is erasure,

blackout to be clothed again

in malachite and verdigris

gilded gradations of glazed red lake,

a thousand flower tapestry


with bite marks

where the tendrils are attached.

Glad Days


Afraid of what the world will do

you feed the birds in your white cotton dress


like Aquinas tousling with the good ending,

pulling back your hair, tying back your hair


as if you know how many angels dance on the head of a pin,

as if you know that fingernails grow after the resurrection.


Those were the glad days. The birds were not machina

& our outermost house was a pageant of Prussian blue.


How quickly the whales belly up.


Draw the curtain, the farce is played

kiln baked, blood stoned, sentenced to hang


the moon is a brew of hellebore

Albion rose, sepal sore


how quickly the stars throng numberless

& now birds pick at flames washed ashore.

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