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  Ed Shacklee

Published on: 3/16/2012
The Night Circus

Against the wall the hands become a hound,
and then a dark giraffe with just a twist.
The chiaroscuro animals aren't bound,
but bond and pair while perched upon the wrist.

Two questions posed and answered in the night
that solve the dark in moments when they tryst,
entwined as they are redefined by light
while blooming from the shadow of a fist.

Published on: 3/16/2012

Slick as Death himself, on moonless nights
he'd steal from bed to bed, and ear to ear
he'd carve his grin across their sleeping throats,
to leave the rest in aftershocks of fear.

And when they chased him, traps; and when they tracked
him, smoke; and had they ever caught him, lies.
Like fear, death disappeared when he came back
alive, although it stayed within his eyes.

But after they would seek him in return,
and certain nights they'd catch him, or almost,
to leave him numb or flinching with the dawn
and toss O'Banion home to us a ghost.

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