Saturday, September 27, 2008


Somewhere under my eyelids

there’s the ghost of a snake, I can feel it,

trying to shed its skin like the moon.

Maybe it wants to be a poem, I don’t really care,

or it’s an eclipse asking

who’s come to the gate of its fangs

that are just as dangerous as the darkness

behind the crescents of the moon,

or it’s something earthbound in me longing for wings,

something wisely-demonic rising like a dragon,

a serpent with wings,

the lowest and the highest,

the unfeeling engine of my ironic compassion.

I have a heart. A big heart. I bleed and weep.

And I’ve got an eye like the slash of a razorblade

that is indifferently incisive,

mystically specific,

cool and clear as a lidless reptile

staring out of the shadows

like a sundial too old

to have any need of time.

Things are as they are without rumination

but nothing’s ever the same for very long,

not even once, without it.

And there may be a trick,

like yanking porcupine quills out of a dog’s mouth,

to pulling all the needles of now out of your flesh

like a rebellious voodoo doll

that just can’t take it anymore,

but I don’t wear my heart on my thumb,

or sip from a thimble of blood

to redeem myself by acclamation.

And it may be a strange shudder of reality sometimes

to have come to this space

where the less you know about what you’re saying,

the more it means,

but I love the way everything,

down to the smallest pebble shines when it does

and more gingerly, the way

I am divested of all knowing

like a chalkmark on a blackboard

in an abandoned schoolhouse at night when it doesn’t.

I wear my new skin like the portent of a forgotten eclipse

that puts its finger to the lips of the flowers

and devours the moon.