“Toward Death” and “Peaches” published in Gargoyle #64 2015

Toward Death


Soon my breath will blanch;

my bones shall fly as ash-filled

motes of dust in air.




My son arrives for a one-week stay,

his reddish beard now goldened

by months of desert sun.


I bring him baskets of peaches,

their abundant glory nestled

in twenty fragrant globes.


He waves them away, his hands

already welting up in hives,

my gift rejected, toxic.


What more will I learn of this

cherished stranger, flesh of my

womb, in time of fraught vacation?


I didn’t know. Or have since forgotten.

It was only sweetness, juice

I’d meant to give.


He bounds upstairs, three

steps at a time, to lie

in closed proximity.

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