kiss of the salamander




Six nights, flicker out;

seven candles consumed.


Black wick sorrows

smother a charcoal soul.


The taste of Rahab’s sin,

baptized in voodoo tears.




Dripping fingers begin to fall,

creeping down;


walls of wax crumble,

cold and motionless.


Wishing away the kiss

of Jericho’s folly.




Bloated worms devour their fill,

leave an empty corpse.


A vacant cocoon,

laced with tenuous silk;


a wandering whisper

lost on the wind.




Shrouded by a thin veil;


a broken smile


from a sliver of sinew. 


Hope on a twisted noose;


pale Japanese maples,  

stripped of scarlet leaves.




The sun wields a rusted shank

slicing open the amethyst sky.


It shines through me,

around me.



languid light

casting not a shadow,

nor lost in brazen clouds. 


I linger in these days,

where the shadows and light

are one.