Cemeterical

Here in the heat of the cemetery, in the peeling heels of children’s feet, in the sweat of stone-watchers and ghost-hunters.

Here among the living headstones, among the itchy onion grass that whets naked shins and smells of cutting boards.

Here the worms are unashamed of their slime, of the apple core that’s marked with man spit, of the millennia that they chew up and excrete.

Here there is a fork skewering the dirt, behind a wizened rock. Do we eat the dead or the macaroni?

Here near driveways and dining halls that pump bodies like blood vessels.

Here puddles deceive, and wary boots wonder how deep they have to splash before they squish mummified ligaments and moldy old teeth.

Here spiders are overlooked architects; redesigning wreaths of webs, forever breaking in the path of kneecaps and night things.

Here a boy of blackheads and hope breathes close to a girl who believes that the shadows are alive.

Here where hand carvings reign, where cubist hearts and communist quotes and severed genitalia are art unlike anywhere else.

Here where hand carvings hurt, where death stares back at the vandal’s split tongue, where the rain promises to restore the memoriams.

Here in this place of picnic and prayer, of half-drunk beer bottles and half-hearted psalms.

Here among the incense-wringers, among the flag-stickers and the flower-bringers, among the rusted rosaries and framed pictures of withered, smiley grand-people.

Here for the remembered ones, and their forgetful nieces who hop from patch to patch of green grave grass while their parents hiss, “Not here!”

Here for the forgotten ones, for the moss-masked stones that once bore names that now no one knows, that died from yellow fever/diphtheria/polio before their time. Long before ours or within their own?

Here lie not the forgotten ones, but the rotten ones.

Here there are mysteries of after beings, of what becomes when the earth contains us, of who we are when we are dust.

Here there are no mysteries, only such.

© 2017 Stellular Scribe

 

A Honey Bear

A sophistication in a retiring of hopeful polymers. Such that honesty sculpts the kidnapped resin of bumble and husk, and refuses to climb the undecided walls. Bulbous paws and paunch and arms, but only half an amber likeness. A bust in bending. Smeared not clear, but see-through. The contents could tumble from its mind. Or drip. Or ooze. But the knowing is sticky inside the feet.

© 2017 Stellular Scribe

Pleased To Spin

Can the wind remember when
you spat into its lungs?
When you spoke ill of ancient
things and unloaded
grief into its squall?
How much do you suppose
it holds to heart?
How much do you think
it resents?
Could it be that
knowing songs
of winding, whistling
old windstorms
carry with them
the curses
of their passerby,
of mortals slim
and fit to die,
of loners looking
to blame their pain
on bits of unfossilized breath?
Of air that dares
to never end?
But what is squeamish,
red-faced jealousy
to, well, face it,
eternity,
and to the wisdom of
perpetuity — the kind
that revolves
around itself?
Can the wind remember the
slights of maddened men?
Or is the wind
unconcerned,
and just pleased
to spin again?

© 2017 Stellular Scribe

that dark mystery

a thousand old beaches
feel that sleep, in a simple way,
holds buried spirit

those waves stir
the rocks deeper than
that dark mystery

in the throat of a
most ancient
music, I,
all marble and salt,
listen

since the
arsenical lobster
exhausts the
voice of shadows,
listeners,
in liquid flesh,
raise their contours
to silent contemplation

but I,
unforeseen,
must bow to
weeping,
and the damp wonder
of gypsum roots,
from which flow
the dark sounds
of the spirit

© 2017 Stellular Scribe

The Almsgiver

Infections are all adoring
to the malleable flesh of unwilling deities.
In the way that almsgivers subscribe the psalms
of their love in the prayers and curling smoke of incense,
so too does the eagerness of disease worship — rather, strive after
the parentage of the body. It is devotion to a god who does not
love back, whose bloodstream shuns the bread and wine, all
bones and cells and atomic fluid burning with resistance.
Such that illness dares to honor the heart and lungs,
one being is polytheism.

© 2017 Stellular Scribe

the nighttime things

to put it plainly, the maroon of dusk suffered
when you flicked on the light of your bedside lamp.
the nighttime things, all shadow and warmth,
cowered at the violent glare cutting from your upstairs window.
backs bristling, their meddling, medallion eyes
burst forth from the place of uncertainty and you shrieked.
it was childish, you knew, and you swallowed the poisoned air.
a twilight-spotted doe crushed the artificial light underfoot
as she fled the scene. don’t go. your voice was rusted copper.
you felt all apparent, like an untrimmed peacock in Pucci’s Firenze,
and you hated the swirling dust and must that framed you in the lamplight.
the light went off. the maroon settled. you stood still and listened for the night.

© 2017 Stellular Scribe

Cage-Free

before you cracked her,
everything was imaginary.

among sisters, she was a dozen
strong. one of a dozen, cunning
grenades, cage-free
and cagey,
painted in porcelain
camouflage.

you could crush her,
and who knows what might have spilled out.

she was the stuff of bonemeal
if bones masqueraded
as white sidewalk chalk,
unwrapped, unused,
laying claim to
the line never drawn.

so then you cracked her,
and everything that was concealed
emptied out at once.

among shrapnel, she was
a plaster cast, hugging
in desperation to the negative space:
a non-portrait of
unfertilized yolk and runny
meringue,
an unlikeness.

you thought she would be
explosive.
you imagined your fingers the fuse,
and that she would erupt
outwards.

but she was the stuff of bonemeal,
and she collapsed quietly.
she took in with her the
weight of keratin and
vacuuming air and
unconscionable
sunlight.

and she showed you,
once you’d exhausted
her ammunition,
that she was all
concavity.

© 2017 Stellular Scribe

Thawed To Be

In lacking, the ice takes on fluency, despite
the humiliation, the nudity — making
a puddle of her faculties. In this, she drips.
Not to say for misery. She knows her being
relies on these: a patch of sun, a turn in breeze,
an adjustment of but two degrees. How can she
take it personally? But still, each piece of her
that the climate kills becomes the stream that trickles
downhill, and suddenly she is all less and more.
Less to touch. More to ignore, as her body breaks
and she rushes free, briefly singular, and then
in ripples, indistinguishable. Thawed to be.

© 2017 Stellular Scribe

as the world above revolted

She saw those men as sea folk
writhing to her music,
submerged and simpleminded.
Above the breach of white water
she sang,
“And you were blinded.”

She crashed overtop their heads,
their scales, their slime, their stink.
She crashed and the sea folk wailed,
“We’re thirsty; let us drink.”

She saw those men as drowning
in the tides of her refrain,
their voices thin and folded.
She watched them plunge beneath
the waves,
as the world above revolted.

© 2016 Stellular Scribe