With teething ring, booties bronzed, and curls in cellophane,
        Mama saved the sterling cup I dumped milk from,
        banged on high chair feeding tray, flung in mirth or rage.

Shelf’s dented keepsake hosts chicken furculas
        my wife scraped and dried to charm good luck.

Crusty specks of cartilage cling on unstrung lyres.

To wish a secret, better halves yank to snap them.

Don’t entrust pulls to clucking mother,
        who might egg on tender girl I wed.

At times our trio rows adrift:
        hemmed among six skeletal oarsmen—
        heads bowed,
        shoulders limp,
        one arm draped over the rim.

On formica countertop, overturn the cup.
Bones tumble lazily.         Strew.
We murmur incantations,
        conjure caribou antlers heaped.

Above the tarnished vessel’s mouth
        dowse a turmeric-stained relic.
It quivers, twitches, divines a furrow
        to embed good seed.

Clamp wishbone spurs on ankles’ spines.
Arched thighs hanker after my brisk milk.


Charles H. Lynch lives in Brooklyn, New York, is a Cave Canem Fellow, and enjoys creating poems using a variety of shapes and types of diction. Recently his work has appeared in Blue House Journal; The Indianapolis Review; POSTSCRIPT Magazine; The Avenue; and The Journal of Baha’i Studies.