Reliquary Arm of St. Valentine
Your vessel was split
into too many pieces for one man, but perhaps enough for two.
Conflated with love, you spread to great cities
all wanting a moment alone with your fragments
to kiss them through glass windows with dustless lips.
In Rome is your alleged skull, forehead labeled, crowned with flowers.
in Dublin is a vial tinged with your blood,
in Roquemare is a shred of bone,
another sliver is in Vienna.
Here, in a city you might think was made of hell
we have your alleged arm, silver-shelled, in an alarmed case:
Golden porticullis poised to drop protecting your pocked bone
knobby knuckles to hold your tireless benediction under a sapphire ring
neat buttons climbing to the hinge where your wrist would be
if your hands weren’t somewhere in Savona.
What will become of the encased saints
when the dead are resurrected?
This bone in silver armour
might drop itself into the harbour
to paddle towards its cousins,
and remedy this long disruption.
Honor Vincent is a writer living in New York City, where she dedicates most of her apartment's square footage to cats and books. Her poetry has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and her writing is published or forthcoming in Neologism Poetry Journal, Entropy, and Nowhere.
The Ekphrastic Review
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