Take stubble from a busted chin,
three drops of sweat unwebbed from one
sprung hand, and two kneefuls of gravel.
Combine with lunchroom shrapnel, scraps
from pigeon practice, blasted glass
and rafters—each in equal measures.
Mix mortar with the dregs of threats
diminished or misunderstood.
Add two parts deer stand, one part woods,
and boy rage thick as tar. Mix well,
applying to the eyes and tongue
and the far darkness shots ring from.
Read Caki Wilkinson’s “Weapon Salve” in the print edition of The Arkansas International 7.
Caki Wilkinson is the author of the poetry collections Circles Where the Head Should Be (2011) and The Wynona Stone Poems (2015). Her recent work has appeared in the Nation, the Yale Review, Kenyon Review, and other magazines. She lives in Memphis, Tennessee.