Bob Dylan, "Tangled Up in Blue" "And every one of them words rang true and glowed like burning coal, pouring off of every page, like it was written in my soul."
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Poem: Word


By Patrick T. Reardon


Declaw the lion King

to a plaster saint.

Declaw Lincoln

to a penny.

Declaw Francis

to a birdbath.


Declaw the man

with nails in his wrists.

Pull claws from humbly proffered hands.

Pull teeth.

Pull the skin away to fashion a lampshade.


Pull this arm out and hammer, and this arm.

Pull the wood upright.


Wear the wood

as a tiny, silver, two-lined elegance

on a thin, silver chain,

suspended over

and pointing to

the starlet bosom’s cleft.


Unmake the flesh of the Word.



Patrick T. Reardon



This poem was originally published in Adelaide Literary Magazine on 9.16.19.

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