your words reverberate,
timpani-like and tinny
shaky shudders entrusted to me,
they are notches beside the
love-twined initials on the lovelorn
birch bark. i count them like tallies,
and also, the echoes.
there are so many that in evening
the bats' ears are pitched like tents
open to catch your sounds
the ones that won't leave me.
they won't leave me.
oh Echo, i heard her flesh-torn voices
in darkened mouths and we spoke
in cavern-hollows, together.
but i stood surrounded as
you contained me and left me
with your words (and
none of my own) and now i can
have the last word,
have the last word.