-Title after Pablo Neruda-
Fanciful creatures who inhale
water, and exhale ballads through
windpipes of coral and kelp,
lungs of sandstone and shells,
teeth of abalone, netted lips,
knotted hairs in tangled locks.
From Bottomland, one rose
and sang to me, his voice a
chorus all in one, of heavy doors
that would not open, their hinges
blazed in the fires of Hell.
He sang of six-legged beasts with
flipper arms that tossed him into
treeless air, of taloned birds that
bit his ears, and fed them to their young.
He held me in his weed-choked arms,
he breathed into my mouth,
and I began to sing to him but
there was no one there.