In the Bardo

In the Bardo


It’s visceral, primitive

checking my husband in

at the VA

a wilting garden

of half-dead men

weaving their way through catacombs

slung over crutches

or their mates,

foot soldiers

barely ambulatory

brandishing canes and walkers

and my man’s doing the 90-year-old shuffle

his bad dream joke.


In this bardo

between then

and tomorrow

between today

and somewhere outside flesh

a space only a demon god

could hold for a anyone,

no matter how old

how battle-scarred,

the wounds wind around

the building


The wounds scream


roll their tongues

around cries

that fall

on the ground

with curdled spittle

The wounds inhabit corridors

between beige walls

and echo of wars

that chewed them up

and spit them out.






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