A Cigarette Lighter

The pills can’t fix it all. Only make me able to fake a smile.

               It’s still always starless twilight in my useless dreams.

               It’s still trying to outrun things implacable and hungry.

               It doesn’t go on and off at will, like a light switch, a cigarette lighter.

               I can’t just love this world.


               Somewhere the child remains, but he is buried so deep and dark,

               That the days have all turned yellow like old photographs,

               And none of that joy has stayed close, or felt in echoes from October.

               She kissed me and I felt nothing. The greatest desire impotent in rage.

               She kissed me, and the gamble fell through the table.


               The mountains hold spirits unclean and always welcoming.

               The ruins of ancient kingdoms and swallowed infancies burn bright.

               The stars shine like those useless baubles in department stores.

               The dark soil is mother’s milk to the returned and graceless.

               The night is some other world, some other love.

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