Ice Age

In photographs

The ladies scream or laugh

It’s hard to tell.

Heads back they bare their teeth

In agonies of joy or rage

Or grief; it’s hard to tell.

All that remains of them

Withered icons growing ever dim.

Choosing’s painful; being chosen’s

Worse. Some lop the juice

First spurt and say that’s tastiest;

Some hesitate forever

As the vessel

Guards its drops, fearing

Time itself must have a stop.

Our language reeks of stops and cuts;

We have no other way to think –

Like dancers frozen

At the brink of freedom

Paralyzed abreast the arc

we cannot see

what this design was meant to be.

In that first winter

When they thought the world was dead –

Dogs cried; devils laughed.

Crystal splintered up in shafts.

We met in tents, a feathered


Touched and yearned and


Till you were me and

I was you.

Somewhere a fetus twists and jerks

Assemblage of dynastic quirks.

For kingdom come from nothing came.

Our world is born

To bleed again.

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