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Jun 2010
blunt tips of bent cigarettes
were incisive as razors -
sliced wrists weeping
bright red sentences,
spattered unborn to blank paper
and turned into statues
so the dead would always remember
what they did,
never safe in the graves
in which they'd took refuge

but blue on blue
was ever her color;
blue on blues
seeping from old sins,
deep, hidden within spidery veins
that traced pale, soft *******,
finally filling mute lips as she slept,
subsumed in oceans of color,
blues that gave stories, as waves to shore
subsided, reclaiming their pain,
and cleansed sand once more

What end to life!
a collection of furies like stone turtles
arranged on the mantle -
just a few dozen last words
tucked among ads for
Old Spice and Polident tabs
unread, used to line
litter boxes in Cambridge
or wrap fresh fish at Hay Market;

then, someone pausing to wave at the sky
missed saving the drowning woman
by years, if he'd tried,
finding questions in every answer;
child curled in hard lap of his mother,
her cold affections of words
blew from dead lips like old wishes
without tender touch or wet kisses;
but that life continued,
if lived only blue on blue
From memories of Anne Sexton I never had, but only imagined were real, from that time we met on Mercy Street.
Robert Zanfad
Written by
Robert Zanfad
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