Colin Schmidt

Breaking the Dead Horse
by Colin Schmidt

Say no. Say Shiloh. To within, from now on, say without.
Can you hear him? Exactly. And wherever all that beautiful disappeared to
to chew the mashed up flesh of your face off its knuckles, god only knows,
but of course he’s off in an empty jail somewhere
elbow deep in the crooked shadow of the moon,
choking down the few birds left chain first, song and all,
painting over your father’s name carved into every yellow cell wall.
And you can stop looking at the sky now. I promise. It isn’t ever going to stop.
In the words that turn nothing into nothing say your name
until it sounds like hallelujah. Let’s agree we followed the right god home,
and still we missed our star. Say ahh. When a ghost loses teeth you swallow them.
Don’t choke. Say always—wait, no. These days nothing says always like never.
And can you find a shard of yourself left anywhere? No? Then say never.
During the last few days you think there is a way back, love nothing.
Then die doing what you love.

Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 18, Issue 1.

Colin SchmidtColin Schmidt grew up in New Jersey and Delaware. His poems can found at The Paris-American and Birdfeast Magazine.

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