love is a rage that never quite slaughters. a murder with no body. a lighthouse sinking
invisible ships. a robber with no hands.
a rapist alone. love is a room with
no doors, no windows, one chair and a rope.
it’s a missing item in a missing
stack. a skin
that won’t sink to the bullet. love
is too tight.
it’s a toilet filled with latex gloves. a burn on the stomach you don’t remember.
it opens your fly every time. it pees. love
it pulls your panties down in an unfinished basement. it kisses your eyelid with crap
trails off in a long,
wheeze. it rips your lips in church.
it talks too damn much.
love faints giving blood, but it keeps giving blood. it’s the stranger you let in to use the phone. it purrs at your feet, but it has those claws. it’s the way you feed and the leash you toss.
it scratches in the walls.
“fume” is from allegiance (Wayne State University Press, 2012)