the knave, covet
the queen, and tuck
the ace of spades under my
pillow on a ringed moon night,
but I am forever shuffling the same
deck of cards. Marked cards, imprinted
with loss and patterned with misfortune. Co
urt cards dressed in ill-fitting suits, each face as
familiar as my own. Four seasons, four pips; twelve
months, twelve crowns. One card for each week of the
year. Sequentially pred ictable, and as underwhelming
as a rigged roulette wheel. U ntil, unable to distinguish
between the red and the b lack, the picture and the
plain, I fold. Void of co ntracts, and bleeding
widowe d blanks.
deal me in,
but deal me unpainted
and unmastered. Deal me clean.
‘If I can just have one last cut.
Do you have a plan for the new?‘
- Alice Notley, In the Pines