Uneventfully, Boots Are Broken
Lauren Gotard

The auctioneer’s daughter
Holds a closet off a seldom
Used stair
Where the West
Wastes away


A rough rider’s jacket,
The velveteen vestige of
A false virility,
Is holed and burrowed
By northern nesting
beetles,
Once of a rider
With deep
Bootleg drawl,
Now a floor mat for
Pornography and
Prohibition whiskey


A whip and tassel
Lay without conquest or
Object of omission,
Barbed fence
Ruined by the offense
Of time


The former armor of an
American conquistador,
It all remains
A molting face of
Brassed, bottlenecked skin,
Elasticized over mounds of
Animal skulls and
Antellers,
Chapped and chain-linked
Lips form a

Smile, lined
With worthless coins
As canines


Her lethargic countenance
A matted heap of
Buffalo hide and
Bullied breastplates,
Her eyes are
Splotchy, star-shaped
Spurs,
That stare,
Bugling, bloodshot
And rusty,
As she is strangled
By rope and line


Sundried supplications
Whistle through bolo ties
And broken arrows,
But their song is
Unreciprocated,
She is ill in
Isolation,
Wheezing and puckering,
Like a three-legged stallion,
She is but a
Festering destiny