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Vendetta

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gives joy only if read in a broken rhythm, pausing
at every period, parting your lips a little at the colons

What: a pity to die my love. To say: "I don't love you anymore"
with no one listening. What: a shame the irritated voice the haste.
The distance between the first passionate whisper and this new
timbre. How little shame I have. to have killed you and put you here.
beneath the very expanse you created.
The: expanse. Is: a cloth. Is: white. Is: a sheet.
Is: a land on which snow has fallen.
Ssh. you'll be alone there. No longer on top. but. under. as is proper
for the dead, as is proper for seed. and. for lilies yet to sprout.
You'll feel something like moving scratches: those are birds mice my
own bony hands that you adored my tongue with its thirst.
Brr. love. how. painful for me to see you shrunken by this chill so
stripped of your gifts in this tomb where I can't grieve for you
but can only dig down to the earth down to its iron
to the fire that now embraces the earth and celebrates me.

Source: Poetry (December 2007)

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This poem originally appeared in the December 2007 issue of Poetry magazine

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Vendetta

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