K) The Keeper
Here is a man used to hollowing the guts out of Land
Rovers, ripping out their skeletons with his bare hands
then coaxing a tune from the twisted xylophone. A merry
destroyer, wax-jacketed, gum-booted, many-handed
as Shiva, armed; as a boy, dirty from every ditch and
tree, hands bulging with the struggles of mice, of frogs,
the boy who took an owl to church where it challenged
the wisdom of the priest with its deep marmalade stare.
Here is a man who fifteen years after, still wears a dull
gold ring on his hand. Fingers which have wrung the necks
of vermin; swarthy cigars tigered black with motor oil and
creosote keep her alive, a flame in the palm of his hands.