Kevin Simmonds | Poetry

I come nervous into the shop
of soaking instruments & talc
where I nod & drop
into a mannish grunt

Men & boys doubled
in a wall of mirrors
blunt my manner until
I’m nearly mute

He calls me to the chair above
the coiled black jetsam
gown dusted & whipped
into the cleansing air

His hands across my forehead
& down the temple
I close my eyes
against this warmth

He turns me
surveys what I can’t see
asks little because he knows
to fear my kind

When I rise shaped & lined
there’s no applause   no dap
only the residue of what
we’re willing to bear