We didn’t protest. It’s not like
you’re going to get anything from
anybody. They don’t have it either.
And the new system moved
pretty quick—

I had found a feral walking stick
stripped from a tree
by a new June shower
nursing trumpets
of crumbled lilac

& held her scarlet eye
on the outpatient
pharmacy line—

If the breadth of the difficulty
rejects one ardent name
I may still call the hour
a phasmid or phantom
freely stealing my heart
from the other needs
that burn it.