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TO LIGHTEN
THESE BONES

do not let him
sully you with
his tragic tale

the same one he
tells everyone, the
very one he
forced upon me

against my
better judgement:
would that he
had emailed it
to me or
linked me
to the post
on social media

for truth be told
I do not do it well
that most painful
of sub-genres,
tragic love
story,

once told that story,
insidious as a poem,
threatens to
never leave

will hollow out
your skull like
a bleak crypt

same space that hitherto
had served as chapel
of blessed marriage,
angels singing, whole
eternal until death
cast asunder glorious
moment, supreme jamboree

but now we
know how
false, how fake,
how ecstasy, delirium
stripped away
attention to detail

those telling details, demon
small-printed
her words
her vows

what sense
do they make now?

if only perhaps God
had changed the camera angle
changed the lighting

that tale
of despair
heard once

is too often
is stuck with me
forever

and then stark and stunning reminder
there is no redemption — there are
no creatures
to bless and then the
albatross curse falls
slips overboard

like an
evil lover
a life-
in-death lover
suddenly
called out
suddenly discovered

Oh this tale that has become so close, so real

his truth now
my truth

his loss
my wandering

his mirrored face so
full of my emptiness

perhaps
I am become
both tale of woe and of warning, corpse and groom
Janus-faced looking forward and backwards
at the very same moment

see the moral, see the meaning, get in close
so you might read the stone

which will teach a lesson, love’s
hardest, unkindest

no love, never love,
but at least peace to
lighten these bones

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