How It Happened

It was a starry night
that is how it happened
perhaps he was tired of looking on
stars lit with hopes that didn’t belong to him

they say the crescent moon was like a scimitar
from a Schoenberg song, only it missed its mark
and caught an ear instead. It was a stark
night, but the blood at least was warm on his neck
curling around it like a warm scarf

he felt that subtle lightness a girl feels
when her long hair has been cut
only it was not hair, but an ear
not the moon, but a knife
not heaven, but the night sky
and the paint was just paint
and the guy was just a guy

no longer starry-eyed

– E


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