JUST WANT TO STAY INSIDE
Just want to stay inside. Don’t want to see anybody.
Don’t want to be anybody. Just want to forget for awhile
that I exist. I’m sick of being besieged behind my eyelids
by a hundred thousand ghosts all gibbering at me
because they were reincarnated as blackflies
that want to be treated with the same poetic protocol as swans.
Flake off and find another furnace to thaw on
and take all these weeping mirrors with you
that can’t look at the stars without smearing them.
I’m sick of splashing through them barefoot.
Go puddle on somebody’s else’s floor. I’ve gone
as deep as I’m going to go with you. Don’t want to mean
anything to anyone anymore. Maybe
there’s someone out there you can tie
your umbilical cord to like a leash on a pet submarine.
Just want to get clean. Take a meteor shower
like the Arabs do when they can’t find any water in the desert
to wash their faces for prayer. Tayyamum.
Who knows? Maybe I can grind my eyes into lenses
like Spinoza in his attic for myopic glaciers
that don’t believe in global warming though the proof
is running down their cheeks in tragic laughter.
Want to be crowded out, effaced, erased like the leftover seraph
of a letter in chalk dust on your blackboard
that dropped out of your alphabet like a Mayan glyph
running in the blood of another futile sacrifice
to avoid the next astronomical catastrophe
they brought down on themselves from the ground up.
Feel bad about this. Mean. And casually ungenerous.
My heart was a wild rose a moment ago, now
it’s a withered green star with the bulbous body
of a black widow spider at the bottom of a teacup
that’s about as Zen as venom, leaking out of itself.
biliously weary of prognosticating the future for people
numb as pharmacies in their outlook on life.
Don’t want to reach out to anyone. Don’t want
anyone reaching out for me when I’m not the one
who’s drowning. Just want to be an empty lifeboat
drifting down my own mindstream as composed
as a leaf torn by the wind from a tree like a censored page
of the Book of Life. Don’t want to be there at dawn
like another excited bird breaking into song
when the sun comes up like the Taliban
and splashes acid in my eyes because I can read
the signs of our demise in three dead languages
and one that’s on its deathbed mouthing the sacred syllables
of its last words fouling the air with lies about the disease
that it’s dying of like everyone else listening to a guru
like a poultice to draw the infection out and break the fever
of the nightmare they’re sweating in. I don’t need a holy man,
selling snakeoil like an antidote to the dragons of serpent fire
running through my veins when I’ve got
home remedies of my own I can administer to myself
like the breast milk of the Medusa that can keep me
from turning to stone with a tincture of the lunar serum
I can drink from my skull cup, bottoms up, in a single gulp.
Spare me your alibis. The interrogation’s over. Forego
the duplicity of your two way mirrors and all your mea culpas
enraptured by the felicity of your own happy sins or not.
All the lanterns of the truth in the hands of the nightwatchmen
are nothing but fireflies covered in soot. Chimney sparks
flying out of a black hole of creosote to tar and feather the stars.
I’m out of here like the heigh ho Silver of yesteryear.
You might hear me howling late at night
like the last of the hunted wolf shamans on the wind
high above the timberline where the air is lucid and thin.
You might be a snakecharmer but I can still shed you like skin.