One horse galloping toward another horse, one sword
toward another sword, is not much different
from how he spends his days,
stable as breath, striking blood from the sky, then peeling back
time with his dirty hands. There’s a small heaven
that pools dimly inside the bathwater the color of rust, where
despite victory, the horse is denied its pleasure, the blade
dulled by the ragged edge of blossoms & rock
bottom, the most ordinary of days.
Susan L. Leary is the author of two poetry collections: Contraband Paradise (Main Street Rag, 2021) and the chapbook, This Girl, Your Disciple (Finishing Line Press, 2019), which was a finalist for The Heartland Review Press Chapbook Prize and a semi-finalist for the Elyse Wolf Prize with Slate Roof Press. Her poetry and nonfiction have appeared in such places as Tahoma Literary Review, Cherry Tree, Arcturus (Chicago Review of Books), Jet Fuel Review, The MacGuffin, Posit, and Pithead Chapel. She has been nominated for both the Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net anthology, and she holds an MFA from the University of Miami, where she also teaches in the Writing Program. Visit her at http://www.susanlleary.com.