long and crooked are his fingers
like his smile

they’ve been broken

his lips taste like iron from the blood that
drips from his nose and rusted roses bloom from
the lapels of his shirt
a cross-stitched madness that
ekes out the marble pattern of his

his hair is star-faded
dying at the ends where the follicles

spl it

but polished brass in
colour and curled
wood shavings

the scar upon his chest
pink and ridged
a chasm
it alludes to the cancer

they found it in his bones

and he has eyes the colour
of a moonset at dawn

the gold of the sun brushing its fingers
along the tops of the trees
it’s his skin
stretched taut a
spring loaded gun
over veins

his youth

warm to the