My Life as a Scorpion
began in darkness.
I was my own light.
The glow from within
was all I needed.
The faded blue-green.
The subtle pale blend.
By that I could see
and almost be seen.
My sting, a shining
first coolness then burn,
was all I brought you—
the fire of knowing
what was soon to come:
your body swollen,
soft, sweet and tender,
before the hungry
tearing of my claws.
My Precious Death
I haven’t been giving it enough
thought these days. Not like I did before.
Then every cough, every ache
flashed like a damn police car
demanding that I pull over,
that I present credentials to show
my organ donor status, my official
photo, my blood type, insurance—
the whole circus show of identity—
as if that was who I was, who I am,
who I will be when I’m laid out
and made ready to be laid down.
In the mirror, last night I saw the skull-
faced cop behind me. He had one hand
touching the brim of his dark and silver hat
and the other, yes, I saw it, on his gun.