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A colt was tied to a post.
It was the color of smoke.
The dark afforded no stain.

I was the only visible thing,
a pale criminal motion
in the city’s invisibilities.

My grainy wrists creaked,
squealed as if bloodless.
The rope that kept the colt

felt a mile long after the knot
slipped its lock, and unraveled,
its ribbed tether unmade

my hands’ making. A man
shouted, Hey boy, that ain’t
your horse. But I did as told.

It wasn’t for me to ride after all,
and in the rope’s unmaking
the colt was also given back.

Later, the crowds unloosed
their clothes and mantled the earth
as if wonder could free us
from the ground.



Jesse Breite’s poetry has appeared in Crab Orchard Review, Terrain, and Prairie Schooner. His first chapbook, The Knife Collector, was published in 2013. He is also librettist for three of Atlanta composer Michael Kurth’s scores. Jesse teaches high school English in Atlanta where he lives with his wife and son.