After No Longer Matters


Tomorrow is a rusty piece
of steel in the belly of a sword
swallower. We are burying him
swaddled in a circus tent. Flags drip
rainwater on ragged edges.
The small ones touch the drops

pretending they are jewels.
I am making this up as I go along,
borrowing from memories
decades gone. There was
not a single traveling circus
in my childhood. But an Indian

magician at the Araneta Coliseum
we did see. He cut his wife
in two with a spinning saw
and no box to hide where metal
met flesh. He dared not pull her
apart to swing her around.
She just lay there
for a minute, not moving.
Then he whispered to her ear,
perhaps words of magic. Some things
we are never meant to hear
or see. We leave imagination

alone in a darkening room,
time and a puncture
in the wall. Light trickling in.


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