the fingers wrung the knots
out from my yarn
the no and not
she hooked into my skin
from folds of puppy fat
off gold ram curls
and though I don’t knit now
I needle knots
they harden in the mind
and will not budge
The thwarting is the flame
that lights the wick,
the stubborn ‘no’ to the imperious ‘yes’.
We’re only brothers when they want our blood
for what’s more natural than brotherhood.
And if we choose to split, and if we can,
what is humane if you can cite mankind
and then return to borders that are barred
and boats of refugees who drown at sea.
The milk he’s gurgling down
inflates my son
soon like his bottle
he will shake me up
when he can crawl
and come his school report
so when he tells me:
“Dad, you’re full of shit.”
I’ll think back on those nappies
how I changed
those panda nights
I cupped him to my breast
my mewling bobblehead
tanked up on gas
and I will answer:
Son, not shit, just hope.”
The gremlins of San Juan
explode a cherry bomb
by lazing feet whose
sandalled fat toes flinch.
The coins in your hand glimmer
like the moon, and everywhere
people play at being stars, and
the sky is flame for summer.
Tomorrow, the police will strip
the land of human comets, and
rubbish carts pick through the rubble.
Tonight, you are the cusp of it all.
Father outsider, a throaty caller, skin
feathered by claw and mange, squats
in his fur tuxedo, shrieks upon the fence.
“We’re not letting him in,” I tell my daughter
who thrilled by the furore hopes to see blood,
her for whom liquid is instinctual,
her for whom ire is a sweet delirium.
I usher her away from the window to
the whelps from the milk-glow wet teats.
The trilling of the brood is our succour,
is a sister sound to the silent telephone,
is as hope hollowed out with words,
“I promise I won’t be late to pick her up this time.”