a piano in the ballroom. The spaces between keys
are full of red crust and the orange-stained ivory
is jamming, cracking up. The song is stuck, a tongue in a throat,
a bird on a leash, a boomerang. She plays faster, but the keys
are fracturing like glass. Limp with splinters, her fingertips can barely tap them.
Determined, she turns over her hand, knuckles down, and drags a bony song out.
But the piano now is just a rusty boat full of broken teeth. The song is nothing
but a sack full of feathers tied to a string.