• Vol. 09
  • Chapter 01

The Trick

They waited for me to perform that trick:
the one that made the elder pilgrims green
with envy – and rage red. The willow sticks
they beat me with left lines as rough and thick

as ropes holding revival tents that keened
for those who were lost, broken, bent or deemed
unfit to sit on benches with our troupe.
High above red dirt, in loose shirt and jeans,

I floated between straight beams and coiled loops.
Scarlet signatures lifted from my skin
like wisps of dew from steaming morning ground.

Far below, the whole show jeered, scoffed and whooped.
The fools! My eyes burnt hot as gudgeon pins.

I raised the roof and I brought the house down.