The main stain, amber and oblong, repulses
but stay with it a moment, riveted by curiosity
to an artifact of quotidian art,
testimonial of bodily fluids and flakes
(its memory foam a record preserving
rough-and-tumble activity by night and day),
locus of dreamscapes and grotesque sounds
the likes of which are seldom heard elsewhere,
which, I don’t mind noting, is probably for the best.

The usual seminal splotches bespattering the center
are redolent of chlorine, how terribly embarrassing,
pungent proof of misfires, spillage, the several conveniences
of onanism, the frenzies of lust, remnants of
human pickling, brine, marinade.

But then there’s the striking crimson stain
imbruing the lower surface and down the left side,
a gruesome blemish flaunting its own mysteriousness
as if proud of the unnerving questions it excites
in inquirers intent on causation.

For the love of God, restrain your outstretched hand;
who dares finger the holes
becomes an indelible part of its story.

Photo by Bart Everson

Brandon Marlon

Brandon Marlon is a writer from Ottawa, Canada. He received his B.A. in Drama & English from the University of Toronto and his M.A. in English from the University of Victoria. His poetry was awarded the Harry Hoyt Lacey Prize in Poetry (Fall 2015), and his writing has been published in 300 publications in 30 countries.