Poetry

Bloodlines

for Frank Chattaway


Arm outstretched for a mate
he lies
wet with sweat
beside the Burma Railway
in ’43.

Skin pierced, line affixed to needle,
a bamboo whisk stirs blood
pooling in the bowl
below
to
keep
the
mix
as
thin
as
the
men.

A pint drained, the needle passes from

one man’s vein to the other, tube
and bowl held high, bamboo
beating all the while
as red runs
down
and
in

.

Through offspring bloodlines flow.

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