for Fleda Brown
With every step he takes, Astroturf appears beneath his feet.
When not in use, his wings fold in
Upon themselves, like fans, sort of, but really just
Exactly in the shape his capes fell into
When he leaned down to touch the desperate hand of one
Who loved him so, who brought him flowers, her devotion,
All her prayers, who bears his name imbedded in her skin
And hears his voice and blessing every time the thunder
Rolls across the velvet black of night. And now he has
No need of jewels, of studs, embroideries to pull the faithful eyes
Across his manly shoulders, or on down toward his belt,
Buckled rightly huge across the center of his hips, where his
Procreation flared, or down to where bells swayed ‘round his ankles—
No, now his raiment glows in light and dark and heavens ring
And sigh along with every mystic note he sings, and every note
He sings is plump with grace, grace, grace, and
Where he breathes, the faithful swear the air smells all of butter.
From Pinning the Bird to the Wall (Tres Chicas Books, 2008)
Used with the author's permission.