The Jaroslavl Fresco

The Jaroslavl Fresco

By David Chorlton

 

The Jaroslavl Fresco

A likeness of God stares through the plaster.
At twilight he turns into a wolf.
His eyes are close together
and the pupils float on luminous globes.
Hair covers all
but the cheekbones

pushing against a patch of sallow skin.
It grows thicker by the century,
wild from its roots

to the frost on the tips
when he runs in moonlight
through the silent forest

with a star of blood
shining from prey in his teeth.

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About the Author: David Chorlton is a transplanted European, who has lived in Phoenix since 1978. His poems have appeared in many publications online and in print, and often reflect his affection for the natural world, as well as occasional bewilderment at aspects of human behavior. A recent collection of poems is Bird on a Wire from Presa Press, and The Bitter Oleander Press published Shatter the Bell in my Ear, his translations of poems by Austrian poet Christine Lavant. A new book, Reading T. S. Eliot to a Bird, is out from Hoot ‘n Waddle, based in Phoenix.

Relics

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Relics

By David Chorlton

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Relics

The empty habit of a priest
appears between Heaven and Earth
with the cross on a string of beads
still flowering on the breast.

His sandals, alight with needles,
rest on the incline
where he stepped out of his body,
and red blossoms have grown
at the nine tips of his whip
that put down roots since last
it stung his back.

The shadow of his horizontal arms
is burned into the pale stones
where he was nailed
to the heat

and the bones he left behind
withered into straws
which were taken for a nest
by the immortal Phainopepla.

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About the Author: David Chorlton is a transplanted European, who has lived in Phoenix since 1978. His poems have appeared in many publications online and in print, and often reflect his affection for the natural world, as well as occasional bewilderment at aspects of human behavior. A recent collection of poems is Bird on a Wire from Presa Press, and The Bitter Oleander Press published Shatter the Bell in my Ear, his translations of poems by Austrian poet Christine Lavant. A new book, Reading T. S. Eliot to a Bird, is out from Hoot ‘n Waddle, based in Phoenix.