The RILL


Once winterbourne and foiled black by snow,
cinereous forest, a cardinal’s miracle,
is dogdayed rutted and subsided. Bones
like light, as friable, rebus the matted
moted ferrous leaves and hulled branches cancellous
as bones, some writ by deerteeth worm and beak.
We’d take the philter here when possible
and headtotoe atop the frozen rill
we’d buzz as whole as we would ever be
(we, us, both umbra and antumbra), warm
and meek like Jesuses beneath the falling snow
and perfectly emotively cold and plumed,
how Cain tries Able front of mirrors icicled
in rooms libraried throughout this evil evil
world thrilled to be the other, entreats sotto
as if from there to hell: Please, sinner, eat us
for us; warm us by your ingle’s manic wings.
We would have lain abreast had there been room.

   Joseph Harmes

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