MAKE MY PATH INTO THE VOID CLEAR AND WIDE
Make my path into the void clear and wide.
Purify my absence in the waters of life.
Let the silence I was improvised out of
like a meaning to a life that didn’t make any sense,
find its own equilibrium like water left
to its own resources. Take care of the medicine bag
of my body when it’s empty. Lived in it
most of my life, one shoe on, one shoe off.
Meant to be a pair I suppose, two wings on a bird
and a mystical third, but it was hard for anyone
who loved me to keep up with the holes
I kept wearing out in the soles of the road I was on.
No where in particular. Here was as good as there,
I wasn’t the locus or the landlord. Years as a kid
growing down on the street, I learned to stand
my ground. Wisdom more of a threat to me now
than it’s ever been, more and more, I let the ground of my being
stand on me. I wore space like lightweight body armour
I never had to defend, and never went on the attack.
You’ll be able to tell by the cracks and the welds
in my bones, I bumped into the world, I bunted
my head against the moon, the moon head-butted me back.
I was alive and interactive. Weirdly radioactive,
an estranged spirit of one summoned to a seance
in an abandoned schoolhouse, drawings still on the wall,
textbooks strewn like dead starfish on the floor,
and all the children of Chernobyl, the abysmal
silence of gone, who knows where, for good.
Hic sunt dracones. Fire and tears. Inter my Orphic skull
under the hearthstones of the urns and ashpits
that surround your heartwood like the orbital tree rings
of shepherd moons and uninhabitable planets
and I’ll spell it out like a waterclock of dragon blood,
the forbidden wavelength of a monstrous lake
that receives the swords of the dead in tribute and surrender,
how many light years it will take to cross the dream
they died for as if your entrance owed a lot more
to their exit than either the door they went through or you
have ever acknowledged. Live the continuum
like the creation myth of a nightsky full of eyes
that keep taking you by surprise when you least deserve it.
Those are stars in their eyes. All that anyone
has ever been left with, when all is said and done
and undone, a tear-shaped drop of the waters of life
hanging by a thread from the end of a blade of stargrass.
A synteretic spark of insight that bloomed,
a tiny blossom in the galactic shadows of ageing galaxies.
Let go. Let go. Let go. Even the wingspan of a single flower
exceeds the measure of the sky and every star in it.
Even in hyperspace you’re never going to fly out of yourself.
Don’t wait to be pryed open as if you had no faith
in the wind. Spread your flightfeathers like a snow owl
in a blizzard, like a sparrowhawk or swallow in the dusk,
helically orbiting Venus over the roofs of the showcase carlots
abandoned on the highway between the fast food pitstops
and the last chance turn offs. Shed what you have to shed
to travel light and gain altitude like the candling parachute
of a weather balloon or a daylily, until as it is above
so it is below, and even a hole in the ground
with the rock of the world on your chest to keep you down,
your coffin lowered into your starmud like a lifeboat
no one’s going to save on the high seas of awareness
in your wake, seems like just another avalanche
of mountainous planetesimals peaking at the cruising altitude
of one more sky burial free falling through
the valleys of death above shrieking with sidereal eagles.
Like I said, even dead, a street kid. Tough love.
Never take your death lying down. Snake-eyes
or seven come eleven, roll your bones like oracles
trying to read the dicey eye-sockets of their prophetic skulls
like the alphabet blocks of starmaps to come.
Hold your candle up to the stars like a nightwatchman
in a wax museum, but don’t teach the fire of life
within you, to hold its tongue in repressive reverence
for the dead like undertakers for the names of things
when the urgent longing of their most cherished dreams
is to enter you like a upper atmosphere, engulfed
in your flames like a meteoric return to their panspermic beginnings,
planting seeds of starwheat in the fertile crescents of Antarctica.