Cadavre Exquis

He was the clay the mold cried out for.
She was the fire just after sunset.
The child licked her fingers and winked at the moon.
Don’t put your chickens in the bank, Pliny
               the Elder said (or was it Kanye?)
After all, there were so few years left and not
               much corn in the fields.
The corn husks crackled in the breeze.  The stalks
               alive with souls of the faithfully departed
She was afraid to ask the doctor the technical
               term for
anything sexual.  He might put two and two together,
               spill details over wine.
Then switched to bourbon on ice, afraid to tell
Her that the doctor had called him with the news.
The doctor called him Burt, his Mob name.
          She disappeared faster than the morning fog by the estuary.
Only the blue heron watching.
          He was left with only his pistol and a
tattoo that spelled Mom, a black widow
          Spider crawling across the bedroom floor.

Across the Bedroom Floor

He was the clay the mold cried out for.
She was the fire just after sunset.

The child licked her fingers and winked.
Don’t put your chickens in the bank, Pliny.

The corn husks crackled in the breeze.  Stalks
faithfully departed.

She was afraid to ask the doctor the technical
              term for
sexual.  He might
             spill details over wine.

Bourbon on ice, afraid.
The doctor had called him Burt, his Mob name.

      She disappeared faster than morning fog.
      He was left with his pistol and

tattoo spelled Mom, a black widow
crawling.
Husks

He was the clay the mold cried out for.
She was the fire after dawn.
So few years left. The stalks alive
with souls departed, faithfully
or not.  She was afraid to ask
the doctor.  He might spill details
over wine.  In the breeze, corn
husks crackling.  Only the blue
heron watching.  She disappeared
past the estuary. From the window,
a small child winked at the moon.

Sunset

Burt was the clay the mold cried out for
            She was the fire
There were few years left

She was afraid to ask the doctor
            For anything sexual
He might spill details over wine

The doctor put two and two together
And called Burt with the news

She disappeared faster than morning fog
            The blue heron watching
He was left with a tattoo that spelled Mom

And a black widow crawling across sunset.

Note on the Collaboration

The three of us first created the starter batch of lines titled “Cadavre Exquis” by each writing a line and quickly passing it off to each other until we felt the “corpse” was completed. We each then edited the corpse and created our own versions: “Across the Bedroom Floor” by Marilyn Kallet, “Husks” by Elaine Zimmerman, and “Sunset” by Barbara Zimmermann Bogue.