A.D. Harper

Three Poems

roll call

I’d like to be the knife-thrower and falling deep in love
with the cliché of my glitter-spangled assistant or I’m
the assistant and the knife-thrower my dreamboat
and trying to decide whether make-up sex comes before
or after the act after probably the flying steel it could go
wrong but doesn’t or I might be on the lighting crew
the secret knowledge that a falling light could kill
a strongman stone cold dead and a clown even stone
dead colder or I’d probably be a clown you can’t tell
their gender or an acrobat in a skin-tight suit they are
their own gender acrobat drama when the facepaint’s
over acrobat/acrobat affairs or maybe front of house
exchanging money for tickets out of costume not part
of the spectacle but promising you it’s going to be
amazing or maybe the crew putting cardboard signs
on roadside railings fixing text to metal and the circus
weeks away just driving and the purity of the future
and no promises broken yet or tears in caravans


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