Tarot Reading at the End of the World

It is not naïve to say you will rise
from the grave a cold twilight,
to follow fog with absent breath.
To carry on life is to let your heat
enter another being, to hold off
the freeze beyond bodies.

I’m thinking of stories that make
the woods make sense,
the spirit who takes
many forms, her skeleton
grown from oak and air,
her hair the stuff of fang
and feathered down.
In her long sight
a lead sound strange
and still, a search
for someone to protect.

Last night I dreamed you
as a wolf. I laid my hand
behind your neck, and reminded you
to remember yourself
as the nude woman pouring water
in clay pots, the stilled heart
run through with knives.
All will turn, in time.
All flesh will come to you,
lain upon the altar, in your arms
a black hole pulse of light.


Conor Scruton lives in Milwaukee, where they teach English and research ghost stories. Their work has appeared in SalamanderCutBankapt, and other journals. They are an incoming poetry editor of cream city review.