Over A “Dragon’s Milk” Bourbon Barrel Stout – Bryn Homuth

The head smolders
as the server sets it
in front of me, the frothy,
thick foam glowing
like embers, the glass imbued
with special fire retardancy,
blown in Smaug’s charred jaws.

My friend orders fat
beef sliders stuffed in a bucket.
We fasten them to the wheels
of our hunger, reach, rend, chomp,
wash down with draughts of molten cold.

We eat as if to stir dormant dragons
in ourselves, beasts in mythic flight
from mind’s unguarded horde.
These brave brew masters,
flame-tempered fingers
scalded on mother dragon teats,

like my grandfather’s muscled hands
milking cows as he sat so often
on a bucket not unlike this one,
bent under a swollen udder
as open rafters leaked light
across cracks and dried blood
fissured through his fists.

I hear the ping of each dart
he squeezed out, knuckles
against greased aluminum.
We grapple with grease-flecked patties
and spice-rubbed spit, breathe
a new human flame, struck to life
in chest’s catacombs, and I wonder
if someday a drink could be christened
in either of our names, if we, like dragon,
like my grandfather,
could be the stuff of legend.

 


Bryn Homuth has recent poems published or forthcoming in The Maine Review, The Tishman Review, and The Turnip Truck(s), among others in various print and electronic journals. His work has previously been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and for the Best of the Net Anthology. Bryn currently lives near Minneapolis, MN and is working on his first full-length collection of poetry while teaching English courses for Crown College.

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