Look how the animal feeds
from the lipped bowl of a carrion,
how it sips the split

abdomen. Air heady
& aluminum-seasoned.
Imagine longing nests here

within paper skin, shadowy organs
my lover who blooms liquid
velvet & curls toward consumption.

See how red arouses mouth
& the looping fly who requests
what is blessed & common

from the unlatched body,
skin cracked & slumping into soil.
She, the fever-born woman,

me, in the wake of the belly’s
eye. Listen for God. Be sure
to thank her.

How to Love the One Who Is Dying by Jennifer Popa

Photo used under CC.