It is better to make a decision and fail, than not to make a decision and fail. - William Gets

Prayer of Pupils

1 nomination

Mid-eye punctures bloom
 in their shadow-sketched 
widening the gyre 
to take in silhouetted 
shapes of an elusive beloved; for now, we fill each
 other’s black holes,
 cradled by the cirrus 
color swirled into a
 word called iris. Glasses off, 
I try to read closely
 the spilled-milk
 clumps of clouds
 that have tinseled 
the orb of your cornea; I see slap dash skywriting 
that either says 
I love you
I leave you.
 Or both? II.
There are ghosts of prayer
 that loiter in the empty 
alleys of my pupils; the confessional
 is filled to the brim
with parts of my heart 
that are too waterlogged
 to wring out without
wrinkling the skins 
of those who would offer 
their holy hands. “Stay” is a word 
that stands stubbornly 
on my tongue’s tip,
 but I have mangled 
a muzzle over the foaming 
mouth of my raw 
animal selfishness - to leave room to love 
you in a way that leaves
 no bite marks of guilt’s 
fang-toothed kiss. III. 
The night before you 
had to surrender your here
 back to the there,
my eyelashes picketed
 along the lid;
with thick-Sharpied letters,
 they beat back 
the sheep’s hypnotic 
baaing, bating me into 
the soft woolen cocoon 
of slumber; something desperate
 holding its blue-cheeked
 breath inside me
 wanted to chart the circadian
 rhythm of your every breath 
and to be sharply conscious 
of the exact sentiments 
of every cell that was pressed 
against your every cell. Insomnia was my only option 
for making molasses out of minutes,
harpooning every hurried hour,
 staring into every cluck of the clock
instead of waking up to find 
it’s face wholly changed. IV. 
The lark’s call was
 unmistakable; there
 was no possibility 
for believing it was
 a lullaby sent by 
the nightingale;
my stomach sank
at the sun’s 
unlassoed rising. At the last breakfast,
my tears melt the mountain
 of whipped cream,
saline slowly mutating 
its sweetness to salty;
and the waitress’s
 cheerful tone is punctuated
 by worried “ums”
when she returns 
to ask how the food is; V.
Your blurred visage
s wims toward me
 to kiss me 
on the sponge-soaked
cartilage of my nose;
 at the culmination of 
the pucker, I can feel 
your lips leaving my skin
 and the “STAY”
 between my teeth 
almost jailbreaks;
 but the key is swallowed,
sitting safely inside,
 scratching up my guts.

© Wyatt


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