erica kaufman





“so sang the hierarchies”
(Milton, Paradise Lost, Book 7)


as cowboys we look back to the image of the tiger
predominantly stoic but necessary, like being in cahoots
with the experience of power and amputation.

politically retrograde but still the story
of perfect humanity, dateline pornography,
the fortunate fall as crucial as opting

for an artificial ankle, or a way of changing
the terms of who we’re looking at.  don
the clothes of the apocalypse and take

the typical vision of a woman nodding,
see a dragon, and name religion war.
amidst all this new world analog,

learn to speak the language of bodice
ripper, then idealize the valley, birds replaced
by sepulchers, use “man” as a verb.










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