Patrick Key

Salted meat, salted earth
like our imminent tills.
One of the sons of theirs

written away with time.
We call back though when the
wound is picked, when the brine

doesn’t stay in a cracked
container. The lashes
are too raw to ignore.

When colors fade away.
As if our memory
together is that old.

Like pigs, always unclean.
As if their meat was cursed.
Doomed below and betwixt.

I would hate to see my
father naked as well.
But what if my mother

needs me to remember?
Her eyes can’t be believed.
The white blanket hides him.

Tomato red seeps through
the bread, as if it’s flesh.
But mice no longer come

from the dirt and the wheat.
Yet blackness drips into
his son, salting the meat.

His body salts the earth
again and again, burnt
ends on the grilling pit.

Patrick started writing seriously later in life, thanks to the help of a poetry class during his undergraduate years. His interests revolve around the absurdity of life and love, disillusionment, and the human tendency to struggle with impossibilities. His works have appeared in The Daily Drunk, The Amethyst Review, The Penwood Review, among others. He’s also the founding editor of the poetry journal Grand Little Things.