Pascale Petit

Issue #
February 3, 2014

A Man's Head

Child of the foundry,
          I once hummed with gold light

like a hive. After the trial by fury
          my childhood ways

were scorched out of me
          like wax from a mould.

I who was once a fat grub
          nourished on nectar

was encased in plaster. And,
          as if this wasn’t enough,

they covered that with a grout shell.
          Inside the crucible

I waited for the precious metal
          to be poured molten

into the cavity I had become.
          Two rough men tipped

me upside-down, neck up,
          and made a botch

of pouring the bronze. For months afterwards
          they sawed and filed

at my feeders and sprues,
          the vent tubes

that surrounded my face like a scaffold.
          I did not ask to be so hard,

to have a soul that rings
          with the echoes of dead stars.

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