Diptych (Headline Heads)

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

for Giovanni Melton (2003-2017), murdered by his father, who didn’t want a gay son

                        Cruel tumulus fate,
              all for sips of spring’s first honey
Each misstep mottles cotton
              O cleft birdbath,
                        o awkwardness,
compressed epiglottis,
                        quiet buttercup,
                                   wings’ asphyxiate
Catecheses iris out pane-man mouth,
            child sours down
            church house buzzard feathers —
                                                        garden-side sigh

                                            Father’s spark-surge on son’s face,
                                  man heat, man palms sweaty, man’s every
                                             corrosive phoneme spit-
                                                        shot to the linoleum
                                                                   How does man boil so beneath
                                                                          without shedding his flesh
                                                                                How hard he pines to snipe son’s soft,
                                                                          brown eyes locked in same brown eyes
                                                                   Four bullets, pointed