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Self-Portrait as a Hand Weeding


ISSUE:  Spring 2009

Nutsedge, smutgrass, clover.

Next to the knuckle, nicked and scratched, the wedding band

convexes the face looking back.

How much longer will this beauty of yours last?

Like a brass rubbing, mud furrows the fine lines:

On the palm, train trestles to a future arriving sooner every day.

On the back, constellations of pigment and marionette ligaments that

play emperor, casting buffalo grass against

the forked tongue of Bermuda.

Could you recognize noxious weed on the easy road? Purge

hard clusters of dread?

Spurge is a recurrent argument, every ransack spills

a thousand lime green questions.

Do you have the patience to untangle

the cumbering nexus, to pull up spurge whole

like a brittle sea star?

Recursive weeding; two mirrors face one another in the brain.

Would you tire of the infinite field

if it were your life laid down before you?

Beaten hand, pentagram of scars,

yes, I would,
arthritic with desire to start anew.

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