Melon Collar

Patrick Kurth


An obi opens bare alone,

Some window to the body

Wearing a cicatrice necklace

No hand can unclasp.


Twilight parts in violet fits

Shadow plateletes weep and stick

A cruel look draws back from the collar

Solace’s dressing unwinds.


Fly-paper lips glisten with penance and

A remnant of pollen

That hardens to resin.

Did evenings always course in so?


Slivers of sleight

Slip inflamed under skin.

There’s no difference in the babbles

Of vespula and apis.


The sickle welt is dressed in the frock

Shred of the cur who plunged a syringe

And sucked out your nectar with such desperation

To swizzle and guzzle an ambrosia of scorn.


On the edge of a gnarled fen

A grove of one elegy

Shorn by the wind

There hangs coiled a single, impossible apple.


Pocket fodder litters the radicle

Pennies, pencaps, boars’ heads, a

Whatever homage of seeds

Jotted in the lee of a grave.


The lie’s all a mottle


Stigma and style, shell and self,

Plein air painting we might’ve

Planted instead


That plummets to earth

To nourish the worms

And the loam still to come.



Patrick Kurth lives in Berlin, where he helps to run ‘Bridge’, a print and performance series featuring the work of local poets. His own writing can be read in past and forthcoming issues of Third Point, Panoply, Red Flag, Soundings East, River River, and the FU Review.