August 9, 2010

Karissa Morton

The Cost of Requiem

tossing playing cards one at a time from the bridge,
bubbles rising with each spade,
i contemplate months gone by ­
back when she of aphrodite vined me with touch.

but now the smell of gingko has dissipated
and the rain refuses to fall warm enough to purify,
so i divorce her from myself, ribs like picket fences
lining the path toward the temple of forgiveness

as i thank god
anatomy prevented her from being a first.

I will obey the orders of those appointed over me:

arrange the flag in three layers,
stand erect and look at the horizon.
ten-inch folds cover the closed half of the casket,
little finger anchored under the chin,
captain of the ship at the helm.


Karissa Morton lives in Des Moines, Iowa, where she is a writing tutor and a nanny to two lovely children. She is finishing her BA in English and considering various MFA programs.  Her recent poetry appears in PANK, Up the Staircase, Writers' Bloc, Fogged Clarity and others.

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