Poet Wrestling with the Blood Hooves


Make no more birthdays of these bloody hooves.

When you strike :: stop dead, only horse & I move—

+++++++++++& {nothing}—+++++++++++no, never broke our

+++++groove,+++++++++++not tentacles nor telling

+++++++++++++++tears of Job

falling like succulent snow
around our throat++++++++++++++& choking.

There is no {you}. Was never a rib missing. Only your forked-
done & curses you hid in alms.++++++++What a demon would

++++++++++has tongued :: the kind of light men
++++++++++brung. & only a two-footed fool

++++++++++would believe you ever

{breathed.} Don’t start. {If you wanted to.} On thicket-stone.
In carnage hospital where doctor & priest pray my blood is full

& faulty & foiling. Contagions. {As you}. I’ve crushed beneath
these blood hooves. Sodden-electrical sting. Touch me. Even

the floor sinks its teeth
+++++into. {When horse & I :: done with you}. In labyrinthine

countryside. In broad day
+++++where you once rang the women & the wolves

mad & mange
like shill bells.

Shepherd & soft cheek you will not find within. {Horse &
I}.+++++++++++Flailing men of the wind we make flesh

& stilled. My brothers think. Caging {you} as if bars
a sealing. Falsetto & neat. A bit of cotton in the ears

++++++++++++++++++++++++++cauliflower & pealing

++++++++++across fallen fields. How they make {you} :: of them,


& carousing as if ever {could you}. With these bloody hooves. These ::

+++++little beast. Won’t even speak

++++++++++:: don’t have to. When we are the bleeding

upright, the fourth tense calling, for every horse {I am} too

wrestling with these bloodied :: bloodied hooves.

+++++Lay restless rust on {you} —++++++++++++breaking

++++++++++nothing from nothing,++++++not even the dust

++++++++++++++++++++of our

+++++++++++++++++++++++++death_____++++++++t o u c h.



Rosebud Ben-Oni

Author’s Website @RosebudBenOni