Rain drips from the roof with the rhythm of tr(i)bal drums

‘ll never know what it is to’ve had everything st(ol)en from me

d men stagger under the weight of their years. Their greedy

eyes weigh them d(own)

ership is the illusion that keeps us working long h(our)s

needs are neighbors we’re afraid to meet; our wants are

the brothers-in-law of the (sou)l

p heals all wounds; if Mamaw taught you nothing else,

it’s t(his)

nails have grown yellow, curving into claws. His teeth

blacken and c(rum)ble

sinks into the bellies of the faithful. It will re-emerge

like rain

CL Bledsoe has two collections, _____(Want/Need) and Anthem. A third collection, Riceland, is forthcoming later this year. He has a chapbook, Goodbye To Noise, available online at www.righthandpointing.com/bledsoe. A minichap, Texas, is forthcoming. His story, “Leaving the Garden” was selected as a Notable Story of 2008 by Story South’s Million Writer’s Award. He is an editor for Ghoti Magazine.