WHY LIVE LIKE A WRECKED SHIP
Why live like a wrecked ship
running around giving lie-detectors to lighthouses
on the battered coasts of your lunar indignation
to see if they’re telling the truth?
I can see your skull from here
rising like the moon
not waiting for anything
like an abandoned throne.
It doesn’t remember the lies you told
like distress calls in the night
to prove that nobody loved you,
it doesn’t remember your heart like an ambulance
that never delivered anyone alive on arrival.
There was a stairwell, remember?---
in a palace of water
that tasted of fireflies and bells,
and fish that swayed through heavy curtains of blood
like the afterlives of mystic oceans
that have long forgotten they never had names
and you were the kind of homeless music
a man can only dream he’s heard
when I first saw you upon it, descending.
Beauty is not a word
things say often and mean
but you were the first time
I ever understood
how the light saw itself
when there were no eyes
to frame the limit of what could be seen.
I’ve run out of wisdom and spirit and night
trying to make you happen again
in the deepening silence
like a tide that pulled me under
to undo the moon from your nets.
And I still can’t tell if I’m an urn
or a lifeboat full of ashes
but my heart is a gate
I’m always closing behind me
as if I don’t want to be followed.