My father is a branch about to break
bending to cut the cedar so he can see deeper
into the forest from our porch. I drag each
felled trunk by the end of the fresh cut,
lay them to rest in piles of green. How
is it I forget to count the rings
in the cedar's red center? Everywhere,
leaves wave like dollar bills—
What love is more expensive than ours?
I grab their great necks and pull.
On the Day of your Wedding
On the day of your wedding,
I’m beating a dead monkey
on the cathedral stairs. I’m wearing
my hat with the horns, a gown
of red arrows that point straight
down. On the day of your wedding,
I’m riding a carousel horse in a glass bikini.
Covered in katydids, licking
Oblivion from a dinner plate, sitting
and speaking of love as if it could save us.
Here is my full set of wax teeth.
Here is your dress like a bandage.
Here, my monkey paws.
Tonight, the moon hides
in her interlunar cave,
does not lean her light foot
through the glass. Our bed darkens
as we grow pale, translucent,
nearly blind. Inside a cathedral
of whittled limbs—among a stony maze
of draperies, chandeliers and shields—
we are the sound of hollowing.
All too soon the sun
will put its torch out on us,
and we will want for nothing
but the dark flowering stations
our ashes left behind.
KRISTIN BOCK holds an MFA from the University of Massachusetts where she currently teaches. She is the author of Cloisters, winner of Tupelo Press’s First Book Award and the da Vinci Eye Award. Her poems have appeared in many literary magazines and journals, including VERSE, Columbia, Pleiades, Prairie Schooner, The Black Warrior Review, and FENCE. She lives with her husband, artist Geoffrey Kostecki, in Montague, Massachusetts where they refurbish liturgical art for churches throughout New England. She is also a contributing editor to the literary magazine, Bateau.