The Emperor
From the Punk’s Tarot

Outside the window, a desert. Mars
ascends, and asks what kind of man
I’ll be. On the screen, Picard,
reluctant, chooses diplomacy
over love. And a woman,
chameleon (chameleons all),
her cells rejecting imprisonment,
rejecting a lesser man,
mates instead, her soul to me.

Keanu’s long coat, a shoulder tattoo
and an apology of AKs. The bullets,
my boots, flip against the wall. And
these words are coded
in the faces of so many. The guru
is a man in dark glasses. Behind him,
a wasteland. The world we hold, a dream.

A costume in bold cuts of black and red,
and a good fuck. Suddenly it’s enough
to need a man as dark as you. The mountain:
a skyrise. The wasteland: a crowded
bus, standing back-to-my-back, and waiting
for the street to pass like a river
behind you.





vernonSherre Vernon is an educator, a poet, and a believer in the mystical power of words. Her work has been published in dozens of literary journals, including Ars Medica, The Coe Review, Fickle Muses, and Eclipse. Green Ink Wings, her postmodern novella, was published in 2005 by Elixir Press, and The Name is Perilous, a 2008 poetry chapbook, appeared in the final volume of the journal Ruah.

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