Michael Steffen






Each dog barking
the way dogs have always barked.
You stuff hours

into clocks. Day in, day out,
steer complaints,
one angry voice to the next.

Invoice. Claim. Adjustment.
Fax. Shuffled
ream and sheaf of redress.

The hum of your blood grows louder.
The inner knot swells, finally
ruptures. You feel breath

luring you back, a muffled drum
thumping in your chest,
the cold sidewalk leveling,

back from the moon’s jeweled tusk,
the basin of stars you held in your hands,
a banqueted sky familiar and vast,

a face leaning over you,
and then another, tilting the light
into your eyes, your open mouth.

Copyright © 2004 Michael Steffen.  All Rights Reserved.

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