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Books Of Number

from Pomegranate Tree by Aphir

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clawed the rings back on my fingers
riding on the shuttle bus
down into the rainy city.
don’t know what to make of us:
you hold the world in magic, hazing
out the mundane and the harsh.
your earnest words my only kindred -
I would never be apart
from you if I lived out my art.

but I have lost the books of number
holding matter in its place.
half a spring-queen, half held under
worlds half-lived in, heart half-faced.
now I see the rain is clearing
roll the window, bushfire smoke
pours in: all the ash and cinders
smell like your place
where I interred my hopes.

I won’t recreate that nightmare
where I stand out in the night
tongues of flame beneath the skyline
but I am safe up in the heights
and you, sweet instrument, I play out,
preoccupied until the end.
instead I leave you be and step down:
begin the work to make amends.


from Pomegranate Tree, released October 5, 2022


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