The dead field gagging on its seeds. Honeysuckles twined
around trespassing auto parts bloom despite the heat and rust.
Hornets stagger irritable to nests knotted thick with humidity.
Each cypress a tongue cancerous with silver moss, cicada husks.
A cardinal slits at a tree, leaves a single feather navigating streams
of air until it lands upon an anthill that engulfs the blood-color
plume. Nearby a dead squirrel gets its eyes eaten at by teams
of ants as flies inject their children in its dried, matted fur.
It hasn’t twitched in days. Bottles jut from dirt like amber daisies—
relics left by late-nighters unhooking bras under stars to crickets
chewing weeds. Clouds, like plant dust, dismantle in the breeze.
Radio and sex disturb this place—the howl of deck-eaten cassettes
cursed by purchasers enough to wake the dead. Though dead wake
anyway. Tapes tossed out unravel like the skins of shedding snakes.
The hot day rallies into night, a pickup weathering the muddy weed
parks where no one dare to look. Its tire settles over soiled panties
left in muck and hardened over time. Pink once. Now gray and faded.
The driver’s peach fuzz shines his youth, his utter lack of expertise.
He dashes at her, palms her supple body like a sculptor new to stone.
She suffers it, knows he can’t yet see how easily her skin reads touch.
Tugboats bleat the bridge to raise as she gives him a pleasured moan.
She kisses back because she’s just as young, doesn’t need that much.
She says okay tonight without pleas for him to wait, and in return
he tries to make it good for her, knowing that a girl’s first hurts.
With twenty fingers tugging fabric, hearts attempt to satisfy a yearn.
Done, he thinks of nothing good to say, stiffens, reaches for their shirts.
She lets him off the hook. Dozing in his arms, she lets a yawn out.
Dead who heard them circle. They last the night. Devoured after dawn.