Home > Poetry > To Judi K., the Zookeeper’s Daughter

To Judi K., the Zookeeper’s Daughter

Come, leave penguins compressed
To allow no leisure. Come love, leave
The bears with mauling eyes and dripping
Jaws–all are idols of themselves,
Preserved in vaults of names.
The garden of the Brown-Shirted God

Is a four-cornered world mapped
In pitted sands and erased by slow,
Infinite creatures. Leave the self-
Digestion of dreams in the tiger’s cage,
The neurotic laugh of the monkey house,
The minds squeezed dry like sponges.
Few tears escape

From the One-Eyed Jack who hides
His myopic eye and tricks a bone
Weary muse to animate the pacing
And swaying. Hearts die, manned
By minds folded over themselves,
Clubbing their own reflections until
Love lies flush among
The spayed brains.

We ante only a name in this world,
Call with lives and raise with souls.
Our hands, blind hope and balls
Are all we have to track the odds.
Come away, please love,
Leave the safari in the zoo–the fix
Of your Father, and of His Son and
Their hell of ghosts. Our
Souls are

Caught between target and gun.
We are the death.
We are the hunter.
We are lead lodged
In the heaven of animal hearts,
Or players, full-faced.



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