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Poetry Magnum Opus

David W. Parsley

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David W. Parsley



Spikes protrude like black horns

from the wounded palms. He is

naked and dumb, strung on the slivered beams

above earth he may not touch.


Ankle deep the faces ripple to his horizon.

Essence of sweat and vinegar floats above

boisterous wagers and gossip spreading quiet

as shadow touches the sea of them.


Darkness climbs the milk-white body of God

with clouds ascendant the face of heaven,

breath rising pitch by pitch into cries, wind

pushed like an army of lightning back to the city.


It blows through gates and courtyards spilling

shewbread beneath the pitch and snap

of curtains surrounding the Holy Place,

tearing like a withered scroll the hallowed veil.


And the eyes of saints around Jerusalem

come open in their graves.


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