"Fountain"  Copyright 2000 Rikken Hansen

The Hunted Swan

Pierced through the center
of object space and spilling
blonde light like revolving main-
stays, the hunted swans inherit
fistfulls of wings, Darwin
and gloriously dislocated
schedules. Left with feathery
touches and pan-to-mind excess,
the hunter refuses to budge
--no, won't pull the trigger--
feels instead, come all the time

Car horn for clear shot.
Eyes, two, crazed with light.

On a hill overlooking
a river filled with twisting thought
you water the tongue with instruction,
whisper into the right ear, "Now,"
expect the other to comply.

The hunted swans
mirror perfect silence,
naked crowing to misted sound.

Whisper into my body of hope,
"Now." No. No again.

Bodies left to fluttering
cream, white dragons,
staked on blue and frozen navy,
Washington's damaged command,
ice-milk, startled taste buds.
grown thick and moaning
another name:

The hunter with smoke
rises, swans in his mouth.
Good. No. And, "No." Again.

The hunter is the swan compressed
to likely survival is the swan
unfeeling, unthinking and curving
is the swan with cross-hairs,
with opiate history.

And money is the swan pink
pain in the mouth leaking blonde
light, work loaded on knees.
open drink of death shakes
the hope of crystal.

Now knowing is too simple.
Artworks and photos
of the kill sell to television.

Now knowing is too simple.
Two bodies compress and
decompress memory physically
in the act of death.

How ice-milk causes a sharp pain
to the head, with spinning globes
of sound.

Blood on the virgin.

Falling suns in the sky.

Diamond teeth in
stained quicksand.

The ground is wet and baffled,
eyes rolled toward the back
of skull, grinning musk;
the car horn says, "Hurry up."
There is still time to make.
Edison rates unceasing, ecstatic
sneer on the mouth of the one
who follows:

Climbing the hill
where his ancestors kindle
and swallow, filling the skies
with a moonlight laughing,
wife irons last name,
victim swan expires.

Stanley Gemmell copyright 2000

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