wastelands

you said that we would need to jump the fence.
bared two broad hands flat for me to stand on.
little snag, tear through windcheater of rayon,
its toggles flail, tangle in curling steel wire.

once up, once over, on butter-soft swamp ground
avoiding, just narrowly, rolling an ankle
and tearing thigh skin on some barb jutting out
we wander up hill to the dark, tiny house.

fingers tug window sills, clawing door knobs
each firmly stuck, like a jaw wired shut.
blind slats slant crooked like clenched, yellow teeth
you grunt and spit, soiling the dry brick beneath

and throw up your hands, palms both splintered and cut
approaching, faint hints of sunrise light your hair
like flickering embers in rubble and ash
the smear of your brow bears a slick, crimson gash.

i was perched at the front porch, hands under the mat
frantically feeling for code or for key
turned my sore, ruffled head just to see when
you heaved yourself up once and over the fence.