The Sons


This is how I see them.
Vibrations across a thin
The younger son
talking on, inclines his neck
lizard-like with acne.
He scrubs authority
with a grievance
fastening to order as he did
to milk. Belongs utterly
to sour retreat, the personality of facts
enough friend, having none other.
But even facts turn him down.
The hunched
mother-gene stooping his spine
year by year, as if facts and the flesh
are without tenderness
cannot even agree
the affliction
other than innocence …
For this is the body.

The older son — spare of words
eyes dark as river stones.
First son of a gentle mother,
handsome as she is not,
a brawler, loner,
ironic, unlike,
violent as the quarries or streets
he works at: by day, by night,
who stares through day’s
lies and double-takes
like a predator.
Here are cheeks, knuckles
hard-lipped with scars.
That of himself which was
born of her, which belongs there,
this quarry of flesh
shall be scarred utterly.
For this is the blood.

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