red

on my hand the knife paints
a red line. red string of fate
red, red, where do all seas
flow to red when the sky is red
sky sailor’s delight dawn rising
red even as red the seas flow
when red like my palms red-pink
flow bloodred my heart red burning
red who came up with that color red
a flower grows from the crack red on
my hand red death red bloom
where does the red go when
red the red wail fish-eye siren-song
red all red who wants to drown me
in red when red the sky bloodens
and wild the birds winging red
red death
red cry of death
on my hand the knife paints
a red line

Aubade at 5am

When I looked I did not see
My eyes were flooded with light, my limbs made of air,
as if there was no flesh, no matter, only shadow,
and blood welled in my heart,
and I could not breathe

It was the pain of beauty, the pain of love
It pierced me – it was so tenderly exquisite –
and my soul was a tendril of smoke
moving over the earth

Sanguine

What sunrise has come
to greet the day with a mouthful of blood?

By night, three old crones sat at their loom,
weaving the clouds blood-orange, passing
an eye between them.

Now immune, I am no longer afraid of
the inconstant spindle. I prick my finger
on the axle of fate. Draw blood.

Rotten fruit flowers from these stigmata.
In and out, in and out, the needle whips
the red thread through this useless cloth.
The four velvet chambers will not give it up.

La lune

The moon gleams in dolorous waves,
lulling the sea to sleep in the still muted
tide of night. Everything is quiet, slipping
into darkness, stupefied by dreams. Everything
spilling towards daybreak. Hush, hush. Listen
to the murmur of mice in their midnight beds,
the berceuse of night-blooming flowers, craning
towards the celestial. Listen to the hymns of
dark woods, the siren song of the salt sea, rippling
lyrics of love to mermaids. Now the owl puts forth
his question, which is answered by shadow
and a kind of gravity made possible
only by starlight.

Madrigal

The body is possible in spring
No need to coop up inside oneself like a Russian doll
No need to pleat the skin, no need to bury oneself
under the earth, no need to rush headlong out of
winds and chills, into rooms where people babble
and pass infection

The tulip stems are an umbilical cord, rooting
me to the great mother. Red to deep brown,
the blood rooted in the body of us all

The optimist in me is reborn in ether
and shades of unblemished blue

Deliver me into this becoming –
into this earth, into this awakening

I want to be reborn from a dust storm of pollen
April my renaissance, my rebirth and resurrection

A column of pure fire, I will wade into a field
of amaranth, bearing armfuls of sunshine,
my hair unbound

Along the vale, crocuses are opening
I am ready to bear fruit