2 Poems by Beatrice Szymkowiak


The Sacred Heart Panel
Chauvet Cave

red redder dots bloom
crimson pulse by the torch

drip sweat & pulverized
ocher into thirty thousand

years press your palm
against mine how long

before your creases mold
my hand into yours red

redder dots pulse by the torch
drip sweat & pulverized

years to limestone
palm against mine

lest breaths dissolve
our carbon dated hand


sweat rots our wooden bed — I lie down — rock-dwelling rounded-eared pikas die —
above 78 degree Fahrenheit heat — causes blood vessels to expand — how far — moles
burrow deeper underground — trees droop to gravel — Aristotle maintained Earth is not
flat — why do oblong shadows eclipse moons — clock dials liquefy — their golden darts
without aim — crows hobble on molten asphalt — ice thaws faster at glacier base — where
pressure is higher — my hand swells into yours — under hot humid conditions round hay
bales — can spontaneously combust — at which temperature do we ignite


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