CONFABULATIONS IN THE PROTEAN LIGHT OF THE IMAGINATION
Confabulations in the protean light of the imagination
where all things live and die. Life is perishing creatively
with no good reasons why. Except we trust---
what choice?---it’s wise and reclusively forbearing
of the mistakes we had to make to survive. That
the light adjusts to the eye that receives it like a star
with a cold-hearted message from the thieves of fire
with wings on their heels like plumed serpents
sporting the horns of burning doves on the hermetic skulls
of their helmets. You paint the world you live in
as if you were painting for yourself with your eyes closed
like flowers in eclipse through an hourglass darkly.
You have to feel the colours through your fingertips
like throbbing shades of red, and venal hues of blue,
and sunflower yellow you can eat straight from the tube,
before you go mad as creosote in a stove-pipe asylum
that squats like a black hole in the middle of the room.
So many have died for the flimsiest of excuses,
you’re compelled sometimes to wonder about
life’s attitude toward itself, if it knows something we don’t
that allows it to hide behind the mystique of its deathmask
like a cult with the conviction dying is the gateway
to the apple orchards of paradise seeded by the fruits
of this one we took a big bite out of like a motherhood issue
with an aversion to apple piety. If sin is original
then the virtuous are plagiarists by contrasting anti-selves.
If life is such a heinous act, then death is a sin of omission.
No one’s ever asked to deal with their own absence.
Or maybe we’ll appeal to our more empathic exits
to conjure us back to the entrance of the labyrinth
where this seance began like the opening act
that starts like a little dance it does on our graves.
I’ve been waterclocking my way through thousands of lives
as long as I can remember the flatlining mindstreams
of the thousands of deaths that followed the day
into darkness like the lifelines on the palm of my hand
waving farewell like a nightbird disappearing
into the portentous silence that foreshadows the end of its song.
Maybe I’m just peeking through the ankh of my little keyhole
of eternity into the face of a stranger on my threshold
I once fathered like the prodigal changeling of myself
come back retroactively to claim me as one of its own.
Maybe death has a secret streak of hard compassion.
A diamond in the ore, because the first thing it does
is take away your eyes so you can’t see what’s happening to you,
like a medicine bag of gunpowder put around the necks
of fatty heretics about to light up like a votive candle to God
in the fiery eyes of the snakepit inquisition flushed
with the power of darkness to make a snuff film out of a virgin.
Maybe. Maybe. Maybe. There’s nothing but oblivion,
dust on the windowsill, urns of the stars
scattering their ashes on the roots of the roses
their own blossoming in fire once brought to bloom in the blood
like the saddest flower they’ve ever looked through the eyes of.
If that’s the case, just like any other night on earth
in the cosmic abyss, listening to the solitude long
for its nightbirds in this restless dream of life,
death doesn’t exist. No hiatus in the continuum
of awareness that persists in keeping us guessing.
Could be a curse. Could be a blessing.