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And so she sang, though silence filled her throat
and tipped her cup, no longer full of coin;
he took her arm, and on her skin he wrote
an epitaph, then lurched away to join
the whisky women flailing in the pews
of yesterday. The organ pumped and ground
a hymn to falsity -- her grimy muse
wept filth with his assault upon the mound,
and as she watched, he winked and broke her nose
with kisses. How she bled and loved and tried,
and how the music swelled, for so it goes
when notes are passed as currency for pride.
The time became her signature; her song
enfolded her. She breathed. The night was long.

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