michael the archangel, castel sant’angelo, rome

he stands impenetrable
overlooking her shadow,
doesn’t see that she
hasn’t washed her hair
in days, turns his head
from the brightness
glinting in her eyes.
his hands don’t feel
her unshaven legs or
the crushing weight
of silences, and so he
never notices when
her shadow wavers and breaks
as, hips swaying dangerously,
she stands and walks away.

(and yet late at night,
clutching handfuls of empty sheet
you awaken, unsure, ask the mirror
“was it me she was thinking about?
or the angel?”)

solitude of a sun at midnight

awake from dreaming, she
hoards this unbearable
weight, keeps it
hidden between mountains
and the folds of her soul.
she holds the minutes close,
gathers them together like
down feathers or memories
to ease the chill of her skin;
unties the knots,
shaves her legs,
rocks back and forth
on naked haunches
in a room closed off by darkness,
looking for meaning
with her eyes closed.

what i see when i look down

mirror shards
under a sky faded
with the overwhelming shadow
of the dead feeling
that hides in the cold
white skin of my blighted
youth, this place seen
through the smoky filter of
could-have-beens, tomorrow’s
hunger, a Possibility blurred and
almost not there.