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Thursday, March 24, 2011

For William Lee, Rest In Peace

As The Grip Finally Loosens A Bit (Goodbye)

you are never toothless, even if you are missing all your teeth

you can still bite back, bite the wrong thing, bite the right thing

you can never use your mouth for anything better than to just

give the simplest words of support, loud as they may be

digging in like tempered spades of heavy excavation

unearthing the hidden truth as they cower a bit, shaking

trembling at the raspy harsh love loud with spittle

and curse and intention to erode the coverage of false fearful pasts

you are always present in the bellowing throat laughter that will

never stop echoing around the rooms of the heart or

the card tables where death is cheated by your toothless grin

holding cards so perfect like fake teeth that bring every round home

every round you make all night pacing the floors of uncertain outcomes

no time for bullshit or gallantry among the broken down souls that require

focus now words now action now meaning now clear cut convictions now

it all spills out onto worn down heels that kick back and watch as it all

unfolds like bills on the table as you ante up for the call and death, well,

death just smiles back at you with your own teeth and you know for sure

he is really getting tired of being cheated by you now

your last hand was not so spectacular at all

but the bluff was always amazing until the end

as the bony hands of your nemesis scraped all the winnings to his side of the table

you smile back at him, the last laugh is yours

blowing smoke in his face, your mouth smiles defiant

because you knew along

you never needed teeth to bite back, anyway


even without teeth,

that mouth made noise that will never be forgotten

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