If I told them your voice was a carnation they would laugh. Predators, they only ever understood the hunt, their favoured quarry that wild beauty that knows no shame, but throws back its head in abandon to laugh or sing and once, in my arms, to cry. Those ancient voices that rose from the river were no heralding trumpets but hatred spat out in gobs that stained your immaculate shirt. They came at you from below like boars from the undergrowth, snorting, stupid and dangerous and not even your lithe, slender torso could dodge their murderous intent. They’ve gone home now, brutes, to boast in their cups, slathering and backslapping your death as proof of their manliness. Here, the voices have stopped but they left behind a poisonous fog that hangs over the river like prophecy; the stars promise only death by knives. There are always angels, hangers-on and do-gooders to cushion the victim’s head. If it’s too late they can always light candles. I have nothing to remember you by, not the miraculous medal from around your neck nor the lucky coin from your pocket. So let’s not talk of sacrifice or the ritual death of the bull-ring. This was no rite. And poet, spare yourself the liberal guilt – the Guardia don’t want to know and your turn will come soon enough.