Thighbones, Clay

Black dog of April, I am your smoke. Green
dog of spring, your greyloose tangled ash.
I am the stars’ shadow, the blanket
of night on the roofs. You are my

midnight. You are the chill of midnight
following me through these days,
ticklish with sweat. Trees like thighbones
or like dust haunt us, spook

our whispered dreams of sorrows
so hot they turn the sand to glass.
You have asked me questions now,
many nights awake, lying. These

questions, almost song, no clatter
so soft with cloud or clay. And we
have laughed together in the mornings.
Your arms welcome me as I lie down to sleep.

Robert van Vliet is a poet, designer, and teacher who lives in Minneapolis. His poems have appeared in Otoliths, The Sixth Chamber Review, Otata, and Haikuniverse.

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