A bullwhip—handle wrapped

      with duct tape, the ends knotted

to halt the unweaving—

                                      a revolver

wrapped in a bandanna, a fillet knife,

      buck blade, and a pair of brass knuckles—


      of blood in the dents.

Every Friday, after work, he parked

      the T-Bird underneath the shade.

I remember my toes

                         gripping the limbs

watching as he unwrapped the pistol,

      cocked the hammer, squeezed the trigger,

loaded the shells.

                          I remember the wind

dusting up the hill-side, bending maple

      and oak, trailer windows slamming


      He liked the quiet of a ditch, the snap

of skull crushing into smaller snaps, the way

      skin flays off the collar bone.

Santee Frazier is a graduate of the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) and received his MFA from Syracuse University. Frazier’s most recent poetry collection is Dark Thirty published by the University of Arizona Press. He teaches in the low-residency creative writing MFA program at IAIA.