4 of july

last summer i prayed and sacrificed self-
hood to the blood god. in liminal space
between afternoon daze and the coming

apocalypse i’d scale asymmetrical roofs
rusted red with dying sunset, swarming
humidity of july rain clawing skin

inside out. on the run: pulling sleeves
over stitches, biting teeth into knives; how to
swallow dregs of wet fireworks and still
glow red as an aorta, as rushing car headlights—

falling, a cascade of violence: rose bushes scratching
and oxidizing knife-cuts; exhalation; each release carving
deep into a heaving cavern of lungs and night.