"A Feast of Shattered Glass" by Giacomo Pope
From the gutter you collect handfuls of hammered safety glass,
overstuffing your open mouth with fists of rock-salt popcorn.
A heavy snow of green cubes falls through thick red
with teeth tumbling, cut loose from rotten gums.
Jawing car’s crushed ice, one million brilliant edges
behind feathered lips, a cave of raw diamond flesh.
A feast of shattered glass, loose asphalt and bottle caps
feeding that anxious static –– terror-choked, hissing.
From new holes, hot pressure pushes blood-filled voices.
Screams ripple to gurgles over studded tongue.
Dark-chipped marbles stare wet as you drain.
That infinite panic echo pulses out of gaping sugarcoated wounds,
a forgotten silence returning as fingernails drag over
yellow painted lines and overflow drains.
You bend and flow inside out,
vomiting smoke-stained filters and meat-hooked rubies under wheel arches.
But there is no lover to pull these splinters,
with plump painted lips to suck clean your wounds.
No thin fingers to reach inside and stitch together your tongue,
to place each crushed tooth in sagging gum with seams of gold.
You will stand leaving brain’s black tar hardening.
A bloodless lightness.
There can be no more talking.