an overtone
is forever added
to the skin
of the drum.

we seal hours
trying to dampen
the orphan harmonics
that trouble
the maker’s sound.

the hair we tear out
alone on a feast day
we tape to the drum head
muffling some, never all
of the raw ringing out.

I’ve been kin
to tundra swan shadows,
sorrow folded shoulders
that undress the heart,
neptune come to rest
in the marked palm
of grief’s chosen family

and i say
in ardent love
i will not mute
the drums I play
beneath your
corn-ripening sobs.

for you and our loss,
this scratched skin sings,
zero-bound infinity,
sings through the hole,
the hole in my voice.

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