After Fu Baoshi

1 November 2016

Something so immediate like a heart attack requires
decades of preparation: the artist hovers
outside the frame & in front of Prague Castle
waiting for a gesture to mark the times.
Above the games, further east, a bomber pilot
absently fingers the release switch before
attention drifts to a carmine sunset
the way it latches the barred wings of eastern curlew.
Siberian steppes await them, then a knock
from the front porch, requesting a séance with Madame.
‘Those drums sound like a funeral march,’ she remarks
slamming the door in the advance scout’s face. But you
have missed this scene, turning point-and-shoot in hand
to the castle forecourt, its mishmash of architectural styles.
In early January, tourists muscle in & slowly
outweigh the dead. Snow drifts layer the street, ice
reddening fingers. Blood is drawn to the edge of skin.

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