5 poems from
Kill Your Darlings, Clementine
Kit Frick

The men here want        in a way
inscrutable        to themselves

to those who wish
to ask                but don’t

they smoke because their lungs ache
for the dead air              they pity it
home it              swaddle it

there is less to say
The men here know
where gold is    where oil

they leave it alone

know it’s best not to dig
too much

best not to uncover      veins in other bearings
The men here know to kill
your darlings                 to kill your daughters
              with blindness               is the only way

to let them leave this place

the men here practice breathing
into paper bags
practice unsightedness               unsoundedness

they practice speaking into the back of a hand
The men here are in limbo
always                always between this and that

the afternoon’s longness           night’s blind

suitcases packed always            always the task
of rifling for a toothbrush         a work shirt

a belt    why

can’t I dig in my heels               why
               won’t home stick
The men here leave bags unattended
then wear a mustache and glasses           then watch

from the water fountain             to see what happens
nothing ever happens

a man with a badge walks by and keeps walking

this deviance used to be fun      now the stakes
are terrible

no one laughs                 or notices either