To Cicero’s Hand

They cut you off, let fall your hammered silver
bracelets to the sand. Then, wrapped in cloth
rougher than gunnysack, you were cinched

tightly with a dexterous twist of braided,
double-knotted hemp. Swung back against
the saddle’s end, knocking eighty miles


on the lathered haunches of a swaybacked mare,
you bled into the little sickle shadows
in old hoofprints up the Via Appia.
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