The thin, dry skin of your lip
comes away on the tip
of your cigarette, the jarred bank of firewater
bracketed upside-down behind the bar counter veers
left, vrooms right, sobering only to mirror
your slumped state. Fall asunder or mend, the world
isn’t for impressing. The crash-and-burn cave
of your heart, the rave talk, the two-timing
and the ten-timing, all turn out one confabulation.
With just this scene to settle by: a light breeze
trembling every leaflet, a stray cat curled in a vestibule
of sunlight, the ears of wild barley open to
a blackbird mimicking the chug and rattle of a tractor
taking the crooked laneway out and down the road.