NINE/ELEVEN:20 — “BOOM II”

I.

And their shoulders huddled
Around the spring
Each face leaning forward
White tongues lapping air

They were told
The aquifers were bone
They were told
The soil was ground horn

They banged and jostled
Bruised their hips
As they moaned and kicked
Over a trick of heat
In the desert

Cracked lips
Were all you kissed
On the frontier

II. STUDIO

I lie awake
Intoxicated
And click repeat

I love to watch
When the sun is out
But at nighttime
It’s much quieter

I can concentrate
On the intricacies
Edits, angles, mise en scène

Click forward fifteen
For an explosion

I love the dust flying up
The towers falling down

Because I am so small
I fit in the crook of your fist
And now the world
Grows small around me

III. SOVEREIGN/EXCEPTION

Make friends with the table
This won’t take long

A quick incision
Followed by ten minutes
With a power drill

They once used horses, you know
They singed a man’s heart
Below his nostrils

(I heard in some countries
It’s still done)

Let me be helpful
Suggest a few pills
For tomorrow morning

IV. STEPPE

At last the chariots
Coursed down the hill
Straight to the ships
Moored on the black water

He dismounted
Kissed the ground
And spoke silently
For the mounds, circles, altars

Of all his fathers

He felt sorry for the deer
Roaming the eastern plain

They would breed and breed
With no hunter’s cull
Devour the leaves
And be so pitiful
As to die
Without devouring each other

At first landing
He knelt in sand
And prayed
To the mounds, circles, altars

Of his youth

V. VADE RETRO SATANA

Depart then, seducer
Faust’s patron
An amateur at possession
For a man like me

Depart
Into darkness
Depart
Into dust

Leave the skin
Spine
Liver
Bowels
Nerves
On the purple stole

As I poke a hole
To bring the light

It once was yours
Defiler

Depart
Defiler
Depart

— Max Thrax lives in Boston. His stories and poetry have appeared in Bristol Noir, Punk Noir, Expat, and APOCALYPSE CONFIDENTIAL. His novella God Is A Killer (Close To The Bone) will be published in May 2022. Find him online at www.maxthrax.com or on Twitter @ThraxMaximilian.