And on nights

When I'm the gnarled oak

In a Grimm's fairytale forest

With roots sinking

Into the meat of the world

And branches creaking

On ancient black joints;

With leaves more dark

Than the sky without a moon

And all green forgotten;

With rabbit holes

At wrinkled feet

And hollows where Time sleeps

Under tendrils of smoke;

A princess came

With bloody feet

And a hound on her scent;

With death eyes

And the spirits on her back

With birds that chewed

On bones in their beaks

And deer that wore

Intestines on their horns;

With a muddied dress

And a reddened cloak,

And laid her torn palms

On my tired bark

Brought her forehead

Onto crusted veins

Under brown trunk

And mingled our destinies

Writ on the tangle of lines

Between the brow;

Sang with the voice of a funeral lute

And I let her have my soul,

For to the world outside,

We were one and the same.