, , , , ,

[first a sacrifice]

Now cup your hands. Hold them out like begging
or prayer. In that space where your palms do not

touch think of something decaying, something
alive. Breathe in this goatish swamp air, what

others call “swamp pussy.” Now cup your hands.
Hold them out to implore, pray. All the rot

of your swamplands are burning. Your swamplands
on fire in your poor, cupped hands. You cannot

let go. I’ll pray for you and your goatish,
dim soul; a beast led to slaughter. Don’t hope

that the goat knows the end of the rope. Prayer
stops when the goat is pulled forward. I wish

I had never seen that. The knife, the rope
and the terrible motion in the air.