cop finally sleeps at the precinct.
cop dreams on the mountain of tespu.
in that dream, he is waking up at a precinct.
trope: abandoned fare, flickering ceiling lights, paperwork swirling about as unseen wind
interrogation door ajar, no lights inside
a sound: rough sand spilling on concrete
cop slowly pushes door open
heat in station, climbs to open desert
wind picks up
light comes on
woman in sack cloth, sitting at the table
hooded, wrinkled, sunburnt, toothless
she doesn’t use her mouth for speech
lips thin, cracked, moisture-less.

she projects a mental image./]]/\[]/
the cop sees:

a black scorpion
on the flat tummy
of a dead teenage girl

the mask of a clown on a fat man

a cathedral he had been in as a child
a cathedral that made a boy blind
sex in the chambers of the chief priest

an old man in a tux,
black top hat
grey/blue octopus on face

an old man who calls himself
‘Tespu of the :o.t.o.g.o.n.e:’

all the visions end.

the crone disappears.

on the dark grey table
a stark white, razor sharp fishbone
hair thin and curved and poisoned.

the sand on the floor disappears
cop wakes up in a precinct.


cop wakes up in precinct
into a live, active dream time of kid.
police procedural. tropes unravelling
like light bursting into space of sleep
partner in doorway yelling
‘we got a body.’
darkness within the doorway yelling, ‘go.’

drive. nothing but rain.
sky much older than before,
wrinkled by streaks of lightning
cigarette sucking partner, cold shit coffee, civi car, first exposition anxiety
loaded shotgun in the bonnet.

“is this the point in time when prose is born from poetry?”
voices in head of cop creates confusion.
voices in head of cop singing nursery rhymes not yet written
by child of cop
who will be given and
who will be taken
by force of the hands of predator.

cop tries to silence voices.
cop tries to close eyes.
cop sees greenish grey submergence force of water.
cop thinks of black scorpion on torso.
cop recalls teenage love book of pre-cop
cop recalls writing the story of his dead girl bride.
car appears to be stopping.
voice of partner saying, “we’re here.”


cop can smell the seed burning
at the back of his mind
rain like a thousand mini fingers prodding him
some pain as sharp as needles or tobacco burn
cop sees the flooded drains
greenish-grey force of water
cop sees the plastic cocoon getting hauled out by hydraulics
ambulances. squad cars, fire brigade. blue police tent with mouth open.

“we don’t have a gender yet.”

cop only hears: it’s the girl with the black scorpion on her stomach.
there is a smell of seed, burning.
down the slippery slope for a closer look.
cop hears his voice again.
‘there’s a certain blindness that follows light.’
cop studies the flooded drain. thinks of the hour it started raining.
plastic cocoon has been lifted out and set down before open police tent.
‘someone has dreamt in the shadow of tespu.’
cop imagines victim still alive in plastic as cars go by before the rain.
He turns to face his partner.
as a burnt flower blooms
in the thick of his mind.


the burnt garden grows

according to the shadow of tespu
voice of tespu in head of cop
anechoic chamber
voice of heart in tespu of cop
reverberation chamber
“she is not one of ours.”

there is a knowing
a trope in procedures:
theater operatics
mainstage morgue
green-blue haze light
studying the body –
ligature marks
brand of tape
needle points
hymen untorn
freshly inked scorpion in black
sting tail raised
hand tattooed
size of a one cent coin
directly above navel
other various points of references
trigger warnings
water in lungs
dry sand in mouth cavity.

then there’s telling the parents.

nights of no sleep
ants of tespu crawling in cop brain
an ecosystem of burnt insects
stale cigarette smoke
cold shit coffee

highway video footage nothing.
junior college student.
18 years old.
reported missing for 38 hours.
“she is not one of ours.”
then whose?
“copy cat.”

the shadow of tespu broods.
the cop broods.
isolation for days.
partner going nowhere.
nubile decay getting under skin.
the silence of black scorpions.
voice of partner droning
“she was reported missing with one other girl.”
the other not found.
the scorpion turns in the tide of burnt seaweed
the shadow of tespu moves.


#tespu # #elijhnmonet


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