Black Water – Eduardo C Corral

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Black Water

 

I  spit  his  name  out  &  four  wolves    
                                   appear.  Black,  eyes    
                                         silvery,  ears  skinned   
                                   &  tense.  
They  thrash  their  tails  twice  then    
                                   rush  toward  me.  
                                          A  dark  pouring.    
                                   I stagger  back,    
raise  my  arms.  I’d  watch  him  lather  
                                   his  throat.  Once    
                                          a  week,  for  a  year.    
                                   How  the  oval    
mirror  held  him.  How  it  doubled    
                                   his  gestures.    
                                          His  hands    
                                   quick  &  odic.    
The  wolves  now  closer.  Close.    
                                   Their  stench  arrives    
                                          first.  Decaying    
                                   meat,  
feces.  An  eye-­‐watering  stench    
                                   that  severs  me    
                                          from  hunger.    
                                   The  wolves    
crash  into  me.  Furious  paws,  teeth    
                                   hot  &  notched,    
                                          manes  teeming    
                                   with  dirt.    
Briefly,  I’m  fording  black  water.    
                                   Briefly,  I  forget    
                                          his  face.  Then    
                                   they  vanish.       
I  spin  around.  Nothing    
                                   but  sand  &  sky    
                                          the  color   of  clay.    
                                   Even  the  stench     
is  gone.  Rattled,  I  tremble  &  tremble.    
                                   Raw  my  limbs.    
                                          Then  I  hear  it.    
                                   The  mirror    
in  a  room   miles  away.  It,  too,    
                                   remembers  him.    
                                          Furred  with  frost    
                                   &  lust,  it  howls.        

Eduardo C Corral

About Eduardo C Corral

Eduardo C. Corral is the author of Slow Lightning, which won the 2011 Yale Series of Younger Poets competition. He's the recipient of a Whiting Writers' Award and a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts. He teaches in the low-residency MFA program at Pacific University.