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Grooming and Pursuit

Flocks careen
the warehouses, wings dodge the prickly pear. Pull your mouth strings

and hazard a guess. See what starts
to change, what's on
a hook.

The last line is for Destination Impossible. Like a clever silk net?

A catchall phrase
for taking cover. We'll wake long enough into the lunar spring. I'll try
to detect

your black rosettes
as you bat a frilly wasp from the air.

I'll mend your ear
when we get there, I'll stroke
the deeplasting of your coat. You're

the most elusive, most inclined to puncture a skull. For you find virtue

in a thrall of flapping, for you temper the frantic.
Leave your slab of meat in the sun.

Camouflaged faces lurking
in tangles,

and marauders
trade lupine and hatchweed
for contraband.

Whiskery broom and sage stay low in the grumbling.

When you pretend to be shadow, when you rub
your shoulder on trees,

we measure metal left in stars. Shrapnel glints under my skin.

The others all tomb together
and rise close to the filament. Stealth becomes us, it's what leads us to summer
in this bare place.

Molly Bendall


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