Consume my heart away; sick with desire
And fastened to a dying animal
It knows not what it is; and gather me
Into an artifice of eternity.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

EXPOSURE

~For JH~

I

All the years I folded and put away my grief
Only to find that drawer still empty,
And what I wore with starched propriety,
The finest threads and custom fits,
All of it lies that couldn’t clothe a nakedness
So stark even the flesh disowned itself. 
So here I stand now displaced and unadorned,
Creased into a space so alien and bare
The self itself no longer knows itself,
And only reflects by sewing up the very words
That stripped grief down to its marrow-bone.

II

In this nudist colony we are emperors
Though we wear only the strips and rags of exile,
Here even the starkest duds are riches,
A lace of burlap a crown, a loincloth
A luxuriance beyond imagining …
What is it they lack they cannot suit for themselves,
The means to walk beyond their blind borders
And meet the world fully-clothed?
So mine come like emissaries of a false prophesy,
Preaching nudity beneath the scorching sun
And framing exposure as motley’s virtue.

III

I came to be rid of the heavy threads
That wear one down, the dark garments
We fashion into liveries and regimentals,
I came to throw off the fatigues of the herd,
The counterfeit greens we put on or off
To camouflage our different styles and fashions,
I came but found the strictest code of all,
That uniform of the flesh, where all genuflect
And bow in unison, bare their heads and heels
To swathe the naked light and then march
Naked into that womb of the white shroud.

No comments: