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School of Flesh

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And blush for a cheek of stone.

      Blush for the lips sewn tight with thread, no speech for the dead
      maker—

      
      You’ve got the razor. You can make each suture snap.

      
      And watch the mouth   
bloom up with foam,
      as if he’d drowned himself in soap—

      You lift the neck and let the head drop back.
The mouth yawns wide its prize—

      
      White thrive.
The larval joy.
      Hot in their gorge on the stew of balms,
a moist exhale—
      as if there were a last breath, a taunt
coiling
      into your inner ear, Good Dog, you dig your hands in,
up-cupping
      the glossal
bed—

      
      saying, Graduate
of the School of Flesh,
      Father Conspirator—


      I will learn it.
      I will bite the tongue from the corpse.

Source: Poetry

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This poem originally appeared in the January 2004 issue of Poetry magazine

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School of Flesh

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