The Vine Maker
He had seen chicken necks
twisted and broken in Chinese markets,
the plucked dismemberment
of flapping wings.
he could have strung his carcass up
like a hog on a hook.
He would have quickly cleaved himself
from balls to breast,
but this was a one-man job.
had to be bundled, separated and filleted.
Strange but he knows what to do.
His hands are now sharp as scalpels.
Fingers are boning blades, lancets,
curettes and shears.
He inserts a stiletto under the jaw,
angling through neck bones, the larynx,
drawing the point downward
severing jugular vein and carotid artery.
He does not collect the blood,
but lets it wet the earth.
He watches the bulbous purple coils
spill from his abdomen.
Chitterlings and sweetbreads,
plump jewels gleam briefly
then settle on the ground
in warm mounds.
A quick slice along the breastbone,
then ease the ribcage apart,
scoop out lungs and heart,
- fat catfish from a keep-net.
Looking upon his piled substance,
he feels as if the great work of his life
had now ended well.
He watches as the meat and offal
begin to dissolve.
Soon from the pools of blood
vine shoots will emerge.
One day there will be new wine.