I have heard the loose-chained bicycle song
lonely in its silken rustle down the street.
Fused and permanently echoing
and neon burrs.
It is the same dry whistle as wind through wheat.
The first-cousin of the rattlesnake
shicking through dead leaves.
The same bitterness of its bite
and the heady forecast of its strike.
Four fangs pulled back into a snare
as white and lucid as a stream of milk.
A reminder to stop rooting for the spring;
its crowded births multiplying
like cancerous cells.
Its sex is not naked.
Not like the dead vines clinging
to the skeleton of an elm.
Wrapped around each other
like the mothers of
Or the stone grapes chiseled
into the mouth of the urn
one woman clutches as she falls.