7 years for us

by Sara Fitzpatrick Comito

7 years for poetry
for pumping in and out
the blood of the heart
for the exuberance
of being one among

the state crushes a peony
and the poet writes with that
new red ink. Subversion! to wrap
the bruise inside bolts of silk and
send it unfurling down the palace steps 

see what moans there, what broken bird
within. The emperor can't have it.
Cut out blindfolds and bring your boot
down on the naked cry. The stain upon
many others cannot be discerned. 

Lock down the compound. Confiscate
all flares. Stuff the mouths with sweets
and shuffle off the men to their work.
We'll show the world our synchronization.
It's the damn Olympic pregame 7 days
a week. It's time. From now on,
there will be no room for “tendencies.” 

7 years for breathing
see the number bend like a crane
for bleeding
may it swoop, then fly
for every molecule
conspiring in vibration
against the restraints
hear the wings? they push the
air past your face
7 years for Zhu Yufu
it is a white bird. An absolute
kind of white. Something of
your dreams
7 years for us.
white, as freedom