Offering

 

–for David S. Buckel, Environmentalist and LAMBDA lawyer who, on April 14, 2018,

self-immolated in Prospect Park, Brooklyn

Oh liontail, swing yourself, arc, arch,

strike the match, its shocking bloom.

Flame-haired devouring eye, satisfied.

Lion hungry belly, fill with him,

that you might spare the children.

You fire-breathing beasts fo despair,

with all your heads and horns, your

long-tail scales fray the rope, tip

the hope-balance farther, a little

farther, toward no more.

Ting, the finger cymbal rings flawless

into the night. Ting, twice more.

Funeral flares fling embers into our ears

before the final silence, when children’s

mouths fill with ash.

Unbuckle him, unburn him, un-

fuel his futile flames, unfossil

the fumes, regold them. Fold

him into our unarmed arms.