Thursday, September 20, 2012



Don’t cover your eyes when the stars begin to fall; don’t
orphan your fire in a well. Your heart is not a museum of roses,
your love not a misdirected airdrop over a refugee camp.

Friend of these sidereal affinities we spread like table-cloths across space,
friend of these lonely silos in my eyes and this blood that breaks like bread,
still, you are the flower in the vase, impassioned, an urgent poppy.

All the blind librarians of the morning star agree
you are not who you say you are
when you show the shadows of authority your passport rainbow.

Sometimes the tongue of a forsaken seer dances like a drunk at a funeral
down the liberated allies of a sleeping ghetto
while the moon watches like a cat on a windowsill
high overhead. Shy bird feathered by your sudden flaring, your heart,
young and quick, darts easily from branch to branch
barely a presence behind the green jubilation
of a million silver leaves trembling with rain on the reborn tree.

Before the bird sings, we hear it. Before the star shines,
the night is fully enlightened. And home is always a bridge
where we wait to be rescued from hurling ourselves off
into our own desperate reflections. Let the fall save you.

You are the priestess in the shrine of mysterious apples,
sybil and empress of opulent oranges. No matter how many alphabets
enshroud the fairies in the legendary brilliance of ancient skies
and over the telephone cancel the sacred islands in their eyes,
your blood will bind them to this vital afterlife of now like fish
swimming through the flawed water palace
of a drowned engine. You can bet your lies on it.

Your sorrows are not the face-paint of weeping clowns,
nor your natural humanity a moat around a zoo for dwindling dragons.
When you sprawl like a wave of wine across the living room floor,
unspooling the honey and gold of your body’s flower-mine,
I see orchards in your guitar, wheat fire,
the landscape of a small, borderless country
trying to decide which of all its trees should form a government.

Compassionate zero, water your only foundation stone,
you string a harp between your fangs
between the unblooded crescents of the moon
and sink your music deep into the heart of your astounded prey.

Little killer, don’t you know, little killer,
let me tell you,
the saints are crueler than the sinners, the virgins
cheaper than the whores, and reason in its nest of crows
a bird that never soars. Through dangerous doorways, under
lethal skies, the ghost dance of the blind tiger, the white faun
while the widows of light pawn their eyeless rings
in the brutal crucibles of dawn. You want some advice?

Only the great fools who plead for nothing
know all the words to the song.




Innocent as gravity and it’s raining.
Trying to paint a Monarch butterfly into a starscape
where all the wavelengths have been woven
by a third eye into a spider web. This morning
the left and right hemispheres of my brain
are separated like an hourglass undergoing
the meiosis of galaxies whose lustre’s greyed
by the senile pearl of the sky. I want to play
aspirationally like fireflies among the stars,
but a gust of shadows has snuffed all the candles
and if I’m seeing stars at all, it’s like a rainbow
wearing a Joseph’s coat of colours
at the bottom of a well that hasn’t granted a wish in awhile.

My heart’s a loom of dissonant wavelengths
trying to weave my bloodstream like a carpet
it can fly away on braiding all these weak threads
and the light of all these images they carry
like the genomes of the souls of the dead
into the d.n.a. of a stronger spinal cord
I can use like a rope to climb up to the sky and beyond.
All my gravitational lensing has turned into bells of glass
and I’m walking on the splinters and plinths
of things that have come and passed, bearing these urns
transmigrationally like amphorae on a shipwreck
to the bottom of a subconscious watershed.
More sad than depressed, but dark just the same
as if all the dazzling suns and lapidary moons
with stars in their eyes that went into the wine
had just closed them in eclipse. Gone back to sleep
as it seems so many flowers to dream a better dream.

What need of my acceptance of what comes or doesn’t
when my denial or assent are absorbed in its presence?
As if I had a say in my own solitude. Or the birds
could get in the way of their own singing. Or the rain
could choose the window pane it wanted to look through.
However I labour to refute it, my awareness
is as spontaneously inclusive as time and space,
or closer to home, the sea its own weather, foul or fair.
I can’t extinguish the desert that burns within me
in a mirage of water, nor drown the stars in my tears
like the tiny insects that sometimes fly into my eyes
that wash their wings out like sodden punctuation marks
uprooted like sprouting seeds in a sudden flashflood of insight.
I can’t catch up to the light. And I can’t run from it.
Whether it stings like a nettle or soothes like an aloe
it’s always the muse, the mysterium of here and now, as it is,
firefly, or dragon that brings the rain, that I follow
in this discipline of disobedience to what I know and let go of
so that it rains just as often from below as it does from above.