This is permanent, troubadour

Come the troubadour

Your life together sure is gonna be rough
Pray the troubadour:

She dropped a coin into the cup of a blind man at the gate.
She was the one shot Jesse James

Chester, you know I’m a peaceful man.
And this, 
All this, 
I rode paint into that onion town.
Hers is that bought-on-credit high-shelf of a laugh,
Hers the stole-from-the-traces smile
Keeps her company the red-stained jerked-beef
Fingers her stained Red Man, long cut

you know,
you’re her spit-cup.
She took her meat at yell.
She took her chocolate impure.
Hers are farrier’s hands
Her toolbag emptied of all hammers
She’s undone a generation of work with a prybar and a smoke.
Only she slows down for, 
in the presence of which she takes the inhale, 
the hummingbirds, 
and they were rising up like jesus against the sunset in texas in two-ought-nine

watch the birdie
she says, laughs 


then the hide behind her the dragonflies, 
the eating of her young forever amber in that tobacco dung.
That very same afternoon was the licking of tattoos
the kissing of scars
the knives’ bevel edge 
the dolphin’s slickened side 
the pain the kissing the trust the come the go like smoke.
She come crashing through every mesquite tree,
crushing them crabapples, 
punching every horse in its head.
She stole through that desert, 
dismayed at gourds,
at the no-sage,
at the lack of new coyotes to kill
at her pocketful of shells.
That misfit she, 
Stole his pearl-button shirts
That misfit she,
Buttoned to the very top.  

The bees they follow her about the chickens, 
That goat is king of the mountain,
And like her,
Eats whatsoever he pleases.
She told me one day in the afternoon rain, 
the quit from work, 
the fucking in the attic heat: 

It’s only a chicken I killed that I’ll eat.

In those early brave days I told her.  I told her:

I like to get some sleep before I travel.  

I prefer my women narrow-waisted.
She revealed wasps on her lips:

You don’t begin to know what it is you want.

And yet, 
shelter took its many forms, 
and as wore the troubadour, 
it came with a crown of thorns.

Photo the first
Cried the troubadour:  

If I could only turn back the clock to when
God and her were born. 
Come in
she said 
I’ll give you shelter from the storm.
This shelter,
This shelter,
Remember from her the attic the swelter,
The pelts the grasses the ticks the chickens broke-dick?

Photo the second

i’ve heard newborn babies
wailing like a mourning dove
And, in her recurring dream:

these my children
and them unto the flood
She’s the one stripped lilacs
for his fallen body,
dead in the dooryard.
Pointed her hips at me like guns, said 
Barren by choice.  
I shall paint as if for war.
Citizens pointed, 

there be belly under that dread
Dogs howled,

my womb shall be as your sun-emptied gourd.
Photo the third

Gone looking for a blood trail among crow’s feet, 
the flash the bang them tornado eyes

You’re like looking at a sidewinder knows
you’ve arisen only to die.

Hers are mercies stillborn in the breech.
From the troubadour, back from the wars, 
among those in sun dresses and blonde tresses:

I offered up my innocence and got repaid with scorn
Come in
she said 
I’ll give you shelter from the storm.
The serpent risen only to die, got looked straight in the eye.
Photo the fourth
Hummed the troubadour:  

she opened up a book of poems; 
And handed it to me; 
Written by an Italian poet; 
From the thirteenth century; 
And every one of them words rang true; 
Whispered she, water moccasin to me: 

It’s time for you to go.
Photo the fifth
Recalls the troubadour, upon first her standing in water:

Suddenly I turned around and she was standing there;
With silver bracelets on her wrists and flowers in her hair;
She walked up to me so gracefully and took my crown of thorns

Come in
she said

I’ll give you shelter from the storm.
These the spent cartridges of promises.

Man, that girl is your father’s bolt-action rifle.
She come across a flower child,
still got the stink of the corn hay in her hair.

Walking the path to that mountain lake, 

I cannot understand my god
And for the first time my god,
my orphaned god,
born of barren loins,
told me

you’ve looked at the sun … 
the damage is already done.
One un-guard moment, she said to me

it’s not so much what i need, 
it’s what i want from you.
There’d be a lifetime in the room, 
and a man would still never know, 
only the burn come out them tornado eyes.
Photo the sixth
She spoke 
of alliances, 
of scars given,
of scars accepted with kisses thereupon, 
of alliances with leaders of revolutions, 
of songs had with wheeling troubadours.
She gave a viper’s shelter to the one, 
to that crazed of a horse,
and they died under the same pained, tanned, painted leather, 
only to rise again,
at the voices outside of men with bad teeth,
a bowie knife, she swung that like a mattock
she hit that dog with her father’s buttstock.
Asked the troubadour

A perfect and complete orphan?
Photo the seventh
Crawdad John said, 

Man I watched her standing there,  
looking over the delta mud,
man like she won it in a card game
And hers the Missisippi,
watching them delta men come barter
their souls to the devil.
Troubador sang, 

You know, you’ll kill yourself for recognition

You’ll break every mirror, cross every coal.

It would seem likely, the ground beneath me shall fall away.
Photo the eighth

I saw her, man.  
she got a confession
out of that knee-walkin’ priest.
She robbed him of his god.  
Left him unrobed, empty-handed,  
his rosary at his ankles,  
took her hatchet to his herd.

That serpent didn’t even get to die,
she bit off its head
that girl’s a
of want in a
of need
run far
run fast 
never mind the burrs
worse than a horse.

You’ll do well
You’ll be second best, 
You’ll get left headless, 
like the rest.

This is permanent
said she.

the band, 
m sweet, 

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