your name is a crown of vowels

settling for beauty isn’t
my strong suit. the earth
swells, exhales breath
like a purple cape unfurling,
and i am still searching
for a safe place to land.

i collect afterlife from the
clouds before it rains, try to
pack heaven inside my bones.
salvation is a jar of silver coins
unearthed by harvest; or a
garnet bird shining like blood
within an impenetrable tangle
of snow-covered bramble.

months, seasons, a codex
of ghost stories. your name
a crown of vowels, my mouth
a phantom moon stumbling
on the syllables. when my voice
returns, i’ll speak it. for now,
it will rest beneath my tongue.

J Matthew Porter lives and works in Birmingham, Alabama. He is previously published in Eunoia Review and The Iconoclast.

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