Today's poem is by Sam Ross

Sol in Leo

Shooting a .22 is perversely
gentle. There is no real

kickback, it is simply an insistent
digging in the shoulder,

trailed by the sour smell of burnt
gunpowder, shells sputtering

from the magazine in a ticking
of brass. When I buy a pass

to the basement rifle range,
my instructor advises me

to conceal my gun on the train
in a guitar case. Aiming at paper

torsos, I see it is foolish to wait
for winter days to lengthen.

How weak a dependence
on light is; like a body easily

betrayed, it can kill a man.
In the Persian miniature,

Sol in Leo, the lion is its own
composite of animals

eaten by the lion: plaited
in the mane, woven in the tail,

folded inside haunches like
contortionists in an open—

walled box of hide. Uncover
enough of what you are

and the world won't think
to look for anything else.

Copyright © 2014 Sam Ross All rights reserved
from Gulf Coast
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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