Lucie Brock-Broido

the halo that
lit twice

Tell me where in what penultimate white
World do you imagine you can be quit

Of these
Blood-tied arteries which lead

Directly to the improbable thoracic
Cavity of me, what Department of Erotic

Wars, what Alexandria, what character-is-fate, what coven
Of intensive care, what raven-

Width, what upper GI bleed, what chamber
Of anatomy, what ice and vigory,

What breastplate, lymph, what coat
Of arms, what curious unspeakable, what one lamp left

On in the vaulted amber window of the Public Library
Where a cowled friar has been deep in study

Lucubrating like the patron saint of random births
And worthlessness,

An accidental light left all night
Long, pulsing slightly

Like the bundled one-ounce heart
Of an infant harvested, delivered here on ice,

Which began to flutter faintly
Like the halo that lit twice,

That lit and faltered, halted, lit
Once more, and then went out.