By: Roy Bentley

It’s tough, I suppose, to lasso anything living.
Especially a creature hunkered down in an hour
of buttery light carrying Eden like some found coin.

This bright-feathered portent is talk-singing a rendition
of Gregg Allman’s “Melissa,” and so quite distracted
with some ghost-Melissa—as if you can categorically

cowboy the Metaphysical, drop your best blue noose
over a shoulders-and-wings upper part of the body
while last sun brazes the grass and groundcover.

Once, this one roadied for the Allman Brothers.
He gives me a look that says Really, bub? really?
in effect, weighing in on millennia of human failing.

He deports himself well, this unrepresentative god,
with rope-squeezed chest and flame flickers for eyes.
I can feel the white lie of a hereafter set like a hook.

Roy Bentley‘s poems have been widely published, notably in Crazyhorse, Shenandoah, Rattle, The Southern Review, American Literary Review, and Prairie Schooner. He is the recipient of a Creative Writing Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, and a fellowship from the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs, as well as six fellowships from the Ohio Arts Council. His fifth book, Walking with Eve in the Loved City, was a finalist for the Miller Williams Poetry Prize. A new collection, American Loneliness, is available from Lost Horse Press.