I promise you darkness, and blinding sun,

and a carnival wheel at twilight,

and in death, a ham atop the maypole.

It will be everything I've promised you,

our lies like fatty fish under the ice,

pendulous, waiting for their fishers to come,

in dead winter, when lovers speak in white,

honest as they are cold, as sundown sun.

Honest as idle lies, promised in twos,

fat as double boasts, and spoons of fishroe,

I promise you the boardwalk and the crier.

("Step right this way for edification!"),

and that we will marvel, blissful, behind our bars:

"Is this the exhibit to the conquered?"

first published in the anthology Devouring the Green (Jaded Ibis, 2015)