he breaks me like a pinata in the town square
children shove past one another to get the best
pieces, mouths slick with secrets, they laugh
and show small discolored teeth. back at the citadel
the clerk is stuffing coins into the lining of his underwear.
he walks out past the guards stiff as a mannequin so
there are no sounds of clinking. he smooths out
a crumpled picture of water and a sunset. some can
make their escape; others are trapped behind the gate.
the women in the walls wail for their lost loves, the king
wakes from a dream and silences them with a bang of his
fist. the children begin to disperse and he lifts my shattered
head gently in his hands, placing two gold coins over my
eyes though i am not dead, only sleeping.