Lifeblood from the writer’s vein bleeds black.
Black ichor splays out on pages white
with irregular constancy.
Sometimes midst the harshest battles
a single drop is spilled, but empty
fields cut the poet, bleed him dry.
Tools vary in this trade. Soldiers
sally forth armed with only taps,
draining dark syrup – sweet and sour.
Taps ancient or automated
all channel the flows phlebotomal.
No sign of wounds save stained fingers,
strained eyes; other wounds stay hidden
till other eyes read blackened scars.
Dark work indeed, but from ghastly
gouges in poetic flesh spring
stories rich in life and light.