Jackie steps out of Air
Force One into dazzling
Dallas sun. Her handsome
Jack behind her. She’s wears
a shocking pink Chanel
and matching pill-box hat.

The Texas governor presents to her
a dozen violent roses.
She holds them in
her white-gloved hands
in case the roses run.

Now riding in the open car
in her lap she holds
her husband’s head,
feels his weight pressed on her,
the brambles of the roses.
Her suit is stained with red
as red as if the roses ran.

Aloft again,
headed back to Washington,
still in her pink Chanel,
she takes the bread, the wine
as red as if the roses ran.

A killer kills the killer
and he had a name of red—
The story doesn’t end.
On a balcony,
in a hotel lobby,
they bring down Martin, Bobby,
both lying there
in beds of blood
as red as if the roses ran
as red as if the roses ran.

Published in Whistling Girls and Cackling Hens, 2003, Pudding House Press chapbook series