In Which We Recall the Willow’s Song

In Which We Recall the Willow’s Song
Kristin Towe

Hushed tiptoes, winter’s soundbox broken—snowfall
this is what we awoke to, and your cranberry lips turned pale
and the trees went off, smoking guns
except for the willow, willow, willow

which was engorged
the only tree refusing to snap, to smoke,
to assault your untainted ears

and you turned to me and whispered
Desdemona is dead.

so, your raven hair, masochistic ribbon
I weaved between the branches
lips flickering out, simmering coals

Ash of winter: alabaster shards spattered on your canvas tongue
this is the last taste you will remember, a promise spat into the snow
quickly, raven wings descend, icicles poised like fangs,
to feed upon your blood rose crown

and the willow, willow, willow.