Casey Thayer

Men Who Play Dead

Then there came the year he quit our town.
I dressed our bed and waited, searched the drains,
the closet hangers, hats for hair, became
a mustard seed for fields to weave around.

I welcomed younger men with darker hair.
The bedclothes not only his but memories
of all the beds I shared, the men I pleased,
the unmade sheets. I crafted lovers there

with blistered hands, with legs like shoots
of wheat. They needed me. They needed me
to grind them down, to sift the field.
Come someone, if I’m here to produce,

I’m here to be devoured. I’m here to move
through the body, a crop you’ll put to root.