A Midnight Oracle

Spread on the seagrass, 
curved as fishing knives, 
the cards of my past arrive 
unexpectedly, three swords 
piercing the heart, the only 
organ that won’t bleed to death, 
while the sleepy moon turns 
its encrusted eyes from molten 
tears falling on the gray, blushing
cheeks of a corpse. I am no knight,
 but no one said I was. I am no devil 
either, although some declare it. 
I am but a man holding the bottom 
of a bottomless cup, gently as a boy
 holds the wrist of his mom crying. 
I think we were more than lovers then. 
We were fools. Stuck in our own heads, 
those hideous, black, hand-sized 
creatures, watching the waves crash 
against the sheltered bay, glistening.

George Cassidy Payne is a poet from Rochester, NY. His work has been included in such publications as the Hazmat ReviewMoria Poetry JournalChronogram JournalAmpersand Literary ReviewThe Angle at St. John Fisher College, and 3:16 Journal. George’s blogs, essays and letters have appeared in USA TodayThe Wall Street JournalThe AtlanticHavana TimesSouth China Morning PostThe Buffalo News, and more. 

See all his poems on Tea House here.

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