the turning of the years by zach wendeln

the turning of the years

I am carved from sand,

like the Sphinx, riddled

with gaping pores. It takes

a lot of fingers and toes

to count the folds

of my furrowed brow, and Time

has nibbled the cartilage

from my nose, a hollow

cubby for nesting hawks.


Bandits whose eyes treasure

the moon's luster mount

my paws, tethering my sand-paper flesh

with rusted ropes and hooks.

Perhaps if they ascend

they might relay the watercolored

motions (heaven's plum waves

and peach clouds) to my painted eyes;

they miss the moonrise.


The last time I saw the stars,

they seemed more like stencil

shapes torn from the fabric

of memory than jewels buried

in a black-sand sky. I lost them,

along with my pocket-watch

and that poem you wrote me,

when the winds brushed the crumbs

of my body into the eye of the horizon.