Another Poem from Church of Needles

Man Shields Man


Two men down on the tracks—

the one who fell in a seizure

and the one who pins him flat

between the rails

to keep his limbs from flailing

as if  drowning or learning to fly.

When the train came on, came over them,

one man used his body as a weight

the way a mourner might

build a cairn over a fresh grave. No,

he didn’t see it that way.

When he leapt from the platform,

I leapt into certainty, he said.

Later he would describe how

the train’s steel belly grazed his ankles,

gently raked the length of his body

like a dry baptism,

like the talons of a sated angel.


Man Shields Man appeared in The Best of Kore Press 2012

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