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The Leopard and the Moth

You’ve got snow leopard eyes.
I’m an
oldwife underwing
perched on the last wheat stems,
sunning myself
before the cold world sleeps.

Frostbound tigress,
prowl under the bridge of trolls:
The toll is a knife in your mouth,
and I’d break my heart on your
headstone
if I could just find the perfect
elegy to sing for you.

The ice on the reeds
at the river’s bank
melts beneath your breath.
I want that breath on my neck–
sandpaper tongue–
and teeth to reap
the red grains from it.

This poem was originally published under the pen name Gabriel Gadfly.
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