poem08 Oct 2018 06:03 am

My patron impresses paramours
with moon shards dappled in 24-karat gold
and fashioned into pendants
for fawn-colored necks, diadems to adorn
black brows smooth as glass.
But for his favorite fucks
celestial jewelry is not enough—
my patron demands poetry of me,
sinuous verses that ensnare emotion,
binding his beauties to him better
than any promise ring or
diamond-crusted chastity belt.
A disgusting seduction
but one I’m obligated to perform
or end up fighting
alley cats for scraps.
Only, my patron’s mining operations
harrow the source of my lyrics.
Poetry is a refraction,
a transmutation of moonlight
(itself a reflection of sunlight).
The moon he’s wrought, hanging like
a chipped saucer in the night,
conjures no more magic than
the broken crockery on my kitchen shelf.
Though I’ve explained the effects
of his brutal lunar harvest,
the scales of his eyes aren’t calibrated
for the subtle calculus
of art and heart.
Accused of disloyalty, sloth, and
breach of contract, I stalk
his moon-embellished lovers,
struggling to distill the secondhand light
to pen a last, paltry sonnet and escape
into the plundered night.

Illustration is View of Constantinople by Ivan Constantinovich Aivazovsky, 1876


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