Brian Kohl


The bridal white of Everest’s lonely peak
has felt the weight of men’s ascending tread,
and captured some, descending slow and weak,
and wrapped them close in cold, forever dead.
The corpse-light graying dust upon the moon
has borne the rocket’s color and its heat,
but cooling quickly, has returned to gloom
with Luna unremarking at our feat.
And far from dreams of ice or unlit space,
We want for warmth and shelter; never know
which structure, seed, or ever-focused face
will last the longest, make a mark, or grow.
But: When our work is sucked into the Sun,
A greater voice will answer us: “Well done.”


I am twin-horned, big-hooved and dewlapped;
also thick-kneed and sway-haunched.
I wander past the couch and slump
as Sleep the Stunbolt Gun
punches metal rod through brindled hide.
Slumber the Anesthetist
ensures that (strung up by knobby hocks) I am painlessly
throat-slit and exsanguinated.
Over the next few hours
the meatman busily apportions my shank, rib, and short loin
into white paper packages tied up with string.