Benedict Downing ~ Muffled Sighs

The barren field suddenly bears sound,
the sound of dead trees waiting to sprout above ground,
the chopped leaves that fell, displaced dirt in swirls of wind,
my chest to swell, grieving, fitful days and their reflections.

Take the bath, blood-water stained, use the sponge to smear your naked thigh,
let her wear the camouflaged jacket, the thick black strap tight on her neck,
the embrace, on the concrete ledge on the bridge’s handrail, above the timed flow of the river,
a balance to uphold while pulling on our arms, hands latched to a sharp sting.

Deceased frozen motionless and lost, descending upon her lips,
dwellings of dismal vanished languid iron jaws,
vast shadow of mourning swallowing of her eyes,
pale powder brushed upon face, dim inhaling,
the candles enduring a shed of tears as they dissolve.

The vacant cup of my hand, regret to hear the bells,
weary, resigned seconds grow larger, at the corner
of fading nights, our road beset by twilight,
yet we strive to shake a pensive beginning.


Benedict Downing is the author of the poetry collection “Sidereal Reflux” (2011) and the novel “Epicrisis” (2014).



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