Kyle J. Skovira


This morning I built a statue of Churchill

in a straitjacket, because I think he understands

how, like mountains, this chemical disposition spires

from the tectonic crashing of two submerged bodies, how

a marred throat can coax the howl from the black

dog that bites it, putting the color back in

every picture of you. Don’t make each room a pillar you stand behind

as every train passes. Don’t look down & anchor yourself

in a few drops of desperation. You have my permission to ignore

me; I am a collective endorphic response & I’d rather

fix every broken ladder than miss out on the view.


After a lover leaves, I started wearing his antlers, scalpeled in sleep
from a nine-point buck folded on the interstate—, it was my turn

to be a man. De-tethered from the walls of Lascaux & startled
by his breath, I bolt until I dissolve into a pew; a man hymns

words cobbled from dust as an organ drools—, it seems
both desperate & sincere. The parish feeds the sound of animals

with body & blood : Everyone looks to be sleeping. Am I comforted or just
hiding an erection produced by fear?

There was a thud on the door like my box spring hit it,
each resting person drawn hypnopompic : a severing cocked

their eyes, lusted with bullets : a paternal history of BDSM & violence
towards the strange thing in the room. The god of this place

put an arsonist at the alter; the stained glass curtained by smoke
confettis as my lover turned hunter fires a revolver : another flash cuts

a tapestry from the rafter, blooming downward
to cuff the light of every projected thing—, how suddenly

I give the darkness what it wants.