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