Today's poem is by James Hoch

Prayer for Teeth

When I smile the wise can tell
          I've long flirted with songs

that kick your teeth in. Lap-steel,

steel-toe locked in head,
          and my head down

unto gutter, unto track.

          I've whispered: Hither,
knuckle. Hither, brick and rail.

Hither, darling e-chord grind,

          metallic tongue
slugging in a clenched jaw.

The world is palsied.
          I ask for tender hands,

                    tender mouth, to lay

where lyrics quit, dissolve
          soul-like. And like a soul,

one more time, never born again.
          lend me some new teeth.

Let me cut them on the purest thing.

Copyright © 2009 James Hoch All rights reserved
from Court Green
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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