Men As Children In Prison, Dissolving

I

 

after hearing you tell how you murdered

three people in an afternoon

and hearing another tell two,

and hearing another tell one,

and another tell two,

and another

 

I’m telling you

there are bits of me stuck in seeing all of you

in your prison blues

hunched

wrecked

heads-in-hands

choking on your own disgust with yourselves

 

stop choking, there’s no disgust 

when you set the details aside.

 

details of your murdering

don’t matter

in order to understand

that you, as a child,

were dissolving in your haunting

long before you spilled

 

how 

as children you came to killing

and how 

you’ll never not be children dissolving

 

so many lives dissolve here.

 

dissolving still:

grabbing at pieces of yourselves

feathery and drifting

like children grab

at viscous bubbles

in awe, like deciduous

trees come alive

with new leaves

 

blindingly

green.

 

II

 

what is blindingly green?

 

a potter says blindingly green

is parts of gloss, opaque, viscous, Bright Spring Green.

 

a potter says it is best on iron clay as it creates

dark flecks and variation in how 

it’s blinding.

 

the potter says, the glaze is solid,

unchanging

 

alive.

 

III

 

what is the difference between a hand 

thrown mug and a man who has lived 

in prison since

childhood

 

where green is concerned?

 

what is the difference when we are 

cooked to mature and cooled again.

Althea Seloover, 2020