Valentine’s Day over, flowers dry up crisp.
Like rose petals saved for months, weeks, days
some are meant to be keepsakes; But she —
she became brittle and numb with rage,
and no longer swung her hips, or
swung her head in those verboten moves
she treated him to — moves all but
forgotten as she hardened
Everything good she would have to re-make
and she worked hard at it, unconscious
she was out and fairly well out, if not off
sanity’s edge when he left to jive
on that dark barn house stage.
It’s unclear when, or how she got the gun,
but even tots in that state
tote deadly weapons, and she doesn’t tell.
She let the gun blowout her simmered rage,
its bullet shot up onto the wooden stage
from where she would control things again,
and from where he would run and collapse
and fade into a baffled mourning,
his horn alone mute, while other horns shot
ache sharp into soft tissue then dry bone
Dear God, did he have to bleed out?
Could he not have soared
on a heroin-free note
above love and hate and
beyond the giant mess?
Could you not have been
if he was not in control,
or guardian of talent?