BEGINNING AND END
Beginning and end. Two hinges flapping like lapwings
on the same gate to nowhere at anytime, both wishing
they were born sundials. Encores of a grand entrance
trying to make a graceful exit toward an abysmally open door.
Past and future. One foot on shore, one in the boat.
The moment’s always two-faced about these things
because it has no identity of its own, not even
a specious passport. Time must be Palestinian.
I wish everyone a backward blessing as I’m walking away
with no malice in my heart and the moon smiles
like a good-natured scar knowingly overhead.
If you practise life among the dead long enough
you learn to master your own failure, evolution
in the life of the mind, not a fountain or a housewell
but a watershed of inspiration, a meteor shower
crashing like an amber chandelier we’re all dancing under
in a glass house of frozen tears throwing stones
at the mirrors of the telescopes peeping through their keyholes.
Is it a curse or a blessing to be the anti-hero of zero
and where would Zorro go to find a mask for that?
God, I’m sick of people telling me to be myself
like the sky and the sea. I’ve seen both when
they looked a lot more than anxious to me and it wasn’t
just another lie about the pathetic fallacy
of empathizing wholly with your own mental weather
be it hell or halcyon as a kingfisher flying low
over a million suns dancing on the eyelids of the waves
like a stunt pilot gliding along just for the easy sake of it.
Ask any flower. You got it you flaunt it. A lot of bees
depend on that. If you want to look further afield.
Show me a star or a firefly with terminal stage-fright.
Even the lachrymose avalanches of the slothful candles
unburden themselves by turning into light and shadow.
And lest you underestimate the cosmic immensities
in even the smallest fires of life, remember,
a single flame’s enough to be the flightfeather of a dragon
with the wingspan of these days and nights on earth
aimlessly unfolding in an expanding universe
like a loveletter from an empty envelope that ends in solitude
when the many return to the one, or oblivion, whatever
came first like a hidden secret that wished to be known
and has heard and seen enough for awhile to appall her curiosity.
But not to despair. The second innocence of the return journey
is sweeter than the apple boom of the first. You can taste
stars in the honey, music in the eyes of the wine
when the one transcends itself back into the many
and every voice reflects the echo of the silence
like the secret signage of a cursive alphabet of sacred syllables
shining on the waters of life like a blessing in tears
and we were always ten thousand poems in arrears.