Mary Crow

One Night's Architecture

They seemed slow motion circling the lamp
with their shadows, too much hidden in them,
their arms adamant, gaze hesitant before
the photos of faces made of stone,
and I waited for them to miss a beat
and turn to me—time was running downhill
while our lives gave off—was this the real thing?—

The face of our hostess an angry mask as she
followed her husband while he danced the room.
I held still, so still I felt invisible.
What she wanted generated the smell of ink.
When she knelt, I could smell bone twisting
on bone, and I moaned as she shivered
the wickedness of things into my body.


Forgetting Piece by Piece

                                    of words
                        like     birds aflitter in
branches in your mind
              a scratching

wheel churning

                                     signals      the      shift

to            sound

you       into      a        jittery              narrative

               where      you     emerge       blinking
                   brighter    delusions

foreshadowing      the       great
                         caesura       in the

         until you're

gone                            you
who used to live here