I’m slowly becoming a very old man
and with such tiny wings
what could I possibly
carry away from my mountain of things
to map my brother’s black path back
from the graveyards and laundromats
and his rattlebone rests on cardboard flats?
To map his path back to a place
where the roof shakes less
and the needs aren’t hard.
Where outside’s out and inside’s in
Where it’s only the dog
that shits in the yard.
Could I, knowing his rot,
issue the call and huddle him here
though I’d know the chill chatter
of his sourmash teeth
and fermented bones
would shake loose the joints
of my safe-steady home?
Could I don the secondhand suit
of an imprecise Christ
that I find every night in the recycle bin
in a faithless attempt
to faith heal him?
I could do that, yes
and take fake comfort when
he says (all over again) that
I love you, brother
This time I swear it’s for real.
But still he’ll just gnaw at the mortar and beams
until he brings down the whole god damned thing
and here comes the dog
and there go my wings