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Catherine Bresner

The Killing Cones



If sadness is & I let it

If you are a horrible thing to say

If now & again & also later tonight

I see an old man I could never be

If his body like a question mark becomes me.


What if I told you the saddest thing

& you let me?

I live on a farm that has chickens

If today is ten acres of land &

You are my farmhand, I will shout at you

Keep your knuckles to yourself

keep to the killing cones.


This is a terrible year for love.



Here, this is a bag of chestnuts.




Let’s cash in our checks

Let’s breakfast in the dark

Let’s be each other’s grandparent

Is it so bad to want something so ugly?


I am calling all the numbers in my black book

I am listening to their voices & hanging up

I am experimenting with the alchemy of aging

I am stubbing my big toe against the day.


I’ve found a Cadillac in my dreaming

I drive around the whole damn place.

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