| From the Archive


Richard Shannon

heart deep in hunger an aged leopard, 
haunted by the fear it sowed in its prey,
sun weary, reclines on the river’s edge

moonlight wreathes his heart with 
the golden image that gnaws at
hoary flanks and their spent sinew

eyes close and the image lingers like
preternatural cool in a cave

arching his gnarled torso the leopard
rises to the lisping voice of the river
in flight from the moonlight’s pastiche

heart deep in water the leopard 
attends to the dissolving currents
soft intimations of unending rain

and the overhanging tree, the souls
midwife, with velvet fingers in
perfect stillness prepares the golden thread 

From phoebe 1.1, Art by Ron Acker

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