Reveille

That myth, that mouthful, those deep
red kernels lifted out of their white

hulls and dripping as if dyed in blood.
Oh my mother, did my teeth stamp a ring

around your aureoles; what else
besides pleasure did I draw

from your underground stream?
I am sorry for the termite hungers

that live in me, that seek the salt
and the sugar in every ashen clod.

Sometimes I am a hen house filled with dank
straw and mud, every throat cackling. Bear

down, bear down, they sing in that darkness
before the yolk drops out of the rim.

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