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Metronome


 They, the metronome
 ache with the threat of cold lust —
 move like a cracked mirror.
 They, the metronome
 with naked leg and split spine
 convulse like surging fluid.
 They, the metronome
 who breathe creosote air
 bite with iron, acid and tooth.
 They, the metronome
 born as ghosts,
 from the residue of rapture:
 a tick
and a kick,
 and the regular
 click of wheels on rails;
 a timeless tempo
 of twisted metal
 into
 tamed skull.
 Trepanned
 until the ticking stops.
 A muted march from
 mother
 to
 incinerator.
 Each moment
 weighed like a
 fat egg.
 Each moment
 pulled down
 the throat until
 each moment
 touches the next.
 A wreck
 that will not rest,
 remains in a lucid dream,
 animated
 by the metronome's fingers.

 A loss of blood somewhere.
 A slow leak only heard at night.
 Siphoned away to this quiet mirage.


John Darley