Tomatoes and cucumbers overcome by mint —
green beans hanging from gutters —
circles around eyes
weepy with moonlight.
We sit on your porch, gliding
on the glider,
drunk on tea and gin.
More tea steeps —
steeps in mugs and cups, saucers and jelly jars —
steeps in the dining room and kitchen —
steeps in the bathroom, bedroom,
living room, basement.
Each swallow provokes
the stubble blotching your Adam’s apple.
Tremors or faltering
Moonlight and stars.
Polyps on your nose —
dried blood at the bend of your jaw —
a Band Aid behind an ear —
drooping lobes — drooping lids
which veil your eyes which aimed
your fist, so long ago,
to beat the two I know only as,
That whore of a wife and bastard son.
The punk of a Camel goes dark
and falls
to all the other ash
that fills your lap

Ed Tato

I have lived across the US, from New York to Kansas to Arizona and Alaska then back east to New Jersey, working at times as a laborer, counselor for at-risk youth, or neighborhood activist. I live, for now, in Coburg, Victoria, Australia

I hold an MFA from Syracuse, where I was my landlord's maintenance man and a University Fellow, the school's top award for writers. I previously earned a Master of Creative Writing from the University of Auckland. My two poetry collections are available online. Some of my poems abide there, as well, or in various print journals.