Their poor mothers’ white gloves on the waters.  Their desperate fathers, too.

Their unborn children dressed

in little unlaced shoes

being read to from unwritten books in undecorated rooms.


Shovelful of unfathomable. Crumbling castle of could have been.  So many prayers hanging from so many hooks.  So many unconscious flowers engulfed in hours


swaying, saying pardon-moi, wearing

fleshy halos, breathy crowns.


And the butcher’s bloody little heaven

in a hole.  The nurse unwinding and unwinding bandages upon bandages until


nothing but bandages are left.


A little gasp of laughter after that.


An hourglass washed up by the sea.

The soapy light of a late June afternoon. And the doves in the hedges

like plans for the future.


Those doves, such

gentle, nervous guests, and—so polite.


So let me ask you.  Now

that we know what happened



What did they have to hide

and where did they hide it?