06.20.2006

Familiars

A pulchritude
holds a lute
of unfired clay;
wavering gouges
indicate strings.

From a marble paddock
bronze Chiron preaches
to the aloes, to the
venerable root-bound jade.

On the screen saver
three favorite Hentai
stills of violation.

On the wall
the second wife
on her first wedding day;
the first mother-in-law

Reading Pooh
to her first grandson.
Namesakes no one met,

Bearded by custom,
shrunken by daguerreotype.
Ravel with a cigarette.

A nude that could be his Pavane
bends over a basin
in a cast-iron stand.

Color is not absent
in the temperate light
of her black-and-white
world; water glitters

In her cupped hand
like a handful
of crushed pearls;

But is water,
no more and no less.
Nearby a black dog

Is curled at the foot
Of the heaviest member
of the heavenly host.

And a cherub rests
on the millstone
about our necks,

that last impediment
to our freedom to
asphyxiate.

Michael Prasil (© 2006)