So does the matador.
He drapes the cape over the bull
and says “Let’s get our wounds
cleaned up, old friend.”
Together they limp out of the arena—
the crowd unable to decide to boo
or cheer does neither.
Side by side they travel, the matador
and the bull, down an old, long
street El Greco could paint with his
eyes bandaged over twice.
The two shimmer in the heat of the day
and disappear, the cape on the ground,
the cape a saint shall bless, then destroy—
what is heaven but what we leave behind?
Published in The Southeast Review