Casino Dreams by Liza Katz

It’s a grim game: the cards unshuffled,
ridged and folded as skin. Slope of the bridge,
slap against the table. The Ace of Spades,
triumphant, flirts with every faded Queen:
a flower in one hand, she looks
the other way. Stops on a chain,
a string of pearls, her footprint
still wet on the rug. Red hot sorrow
melts into fine-spun hair. In the wide
black apron of night, to be unneeded
maddens him. Their bodies absorb the lack
as they would take bread, salt. The light
ill-nourished, the cards spread open, flecked,
inflected: Do you mind if I close the curtain?


About Liza Katz