The Rule


Father trellis of my voice (or noose) abruptly vanished — 


I wear this razory fishhook
of crucifix.

How it helps me
keep my head

down with shame,
the glory
and shame

see this frail weightless chain:

there is another
like it.
my neck feels
like it’s
breaking — 

It hangs right here
near the heart’s
hidden room

where a table is set for me
a dark bar.
No more
that pointless horror.

Weightless frail
massive iron
seaweed and
barnacle-bearded anchor — 

You may peek from your door toward dawn
and see me attempting to make it
to the end of the hallway

to the restroom
bent double,
for air in small sips

but I will be there, table set
for three,
the unseen
host, then me
there to meet my own

glorified body

who does resemble me
in a vague way,
but is not particularly radiant

or splendid: he is ugly,
as though he had been crying all his life

that can’t be my soul
people scream
when they first see it
More Poems by Franz Wright