Birthmark

A child was born with death, a poppy birthmark
tattooed cutely on its tender skin adding art to flesh.

Pulling long carrot roots from the soft mulch
one weary eve, the boy saw sleepy time,
inveterate as an old hoary smoker, drowse across the dale
like a lucent birthmark floating free but as for skin.
The gait unreal as reflections of clouds on placid waters,
no grass bent under its soles weightless as a dream.
The boy felt like the sky needled by the strings of rains.

The cloud has dispersed and become my inky skin,
quiet as water on skin, soothing as a shower
after long dirty drudgery, the last before a holiday.

That wombs me home–the primeval state before light.

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