Heart Rat

Your heart rat escaped the ribcage

                                                        trap

too late to save its brain:

 

they peeled back the skin, broke the skull beneath

to search for what cannot be found.

 

Line after line we try

to shed our shroud of lies.

I aim too high,

                            afraid

not of hights but the oubliette

where words forget to hide our fear,

 

& then the poem disappears

                                                         when

you tell me how you held her in your hands

as she died.

 

Your heart rat was one of the lucky ones:

 

She was loved,

not experimented on.

 

If only

              we could all be so lucky…

 

 

“Everything I love will die / in due time”*

Nothing left but the wet
decaying process
of repetition,
                not you
but something else;
unheimlich; the body
rigid
though not yet cold;

failing to feel the ground
beneath my feet
                trembling;
I leave the room
to try & force my fists & skull
                through a wall.

Sometimes I forget that you’re gone.

Sometimes I hate you for leaving,

but as you told me “c’est la vie:
la tristesse sera fini bientôt,

mais je suis désolé mon enfant.”

Sometimes I forget your face & panic.

Sometimes I take solace knowing
that now you’re nothing

& sometimes I can’t stand it.

My greatest regret will forever be
not being there to see
                your final breath.

                            &
what I whispered to you when
                all energy had left
will remain a secret
I will keep forever…

* Iron Chic – Know What I Mean, Jellybean

The Animal

To see and be the ugly things of life.

To know there is terror in the sublime.

To be
a biological organism,
a bipedal mammal
with opposable thumbs;
 
witness the animals as they come together
to gather round the fire
& make their greatest mistake as
they take the communication system
moulded from noises and turn it
into language:
                a feed-back loop into which members of the group
                will descend when
                they discover how
                to talk to themselves
                & not others;

necessary lie of grammar, to anchor
our respective first-person perspective  
it gave rise to the lie that is the “I”,
                the insistence
that there is something different inside of us.

Can you appreciate sensation: the feeling
of vibration;
the harmony of eternal energy
composing & flowing through us?

Is there hope to be discovered
                            of escape
from the day to day
after day after day
of feeling dull & repetitive
& dull &
the same?

Solidarity

The grass is no greener on the other side,
no matter what they say
& stomachs like ours can’t digest it anyway.

Whether we’re more poster-children
for just another trend
we’re still just children.

I guess that’s why its so easy to hate
& why black & white look better than grey.

But easy doesn’t leave a trace,
can’t keep that fear at bay…

not one of us is exempt.

Whatever consequence
you want to call god or
karma or claim as the fault of others,

only we can face the danger of freedom;
only we can fight the terror of existence,

but I cannot do it alone.

So

will you join me?

Zabbaleen

& like any god
-forsaken thing, I want nothing more
than my breaths
– Ocean Vuong

Signals traverse spines & veins.

Eyes dilate.

Tracing ancient patterns,
the sinuous ribbons of memory
renewed through constant sacrifice

                rise:

another performance

of terror & necessity.

Some animals survive & others die,

while through it all

the light plays games across the spectacle,
watched over by gods
who know nothing of mercy.
 
~~~

Here though, there are no gods;
here the wind touches glass & concrete trees
fells greasy cardboard leaves,
plastic carrier bags,
cigarette ends,
empty cans &
people.

~~~

The Gazelle has broken limbs,
has lost it's noble frame
& the grace of such delicate movements

between jaws, claws, teeth &
brutal muscle;
adrenaline, instinct & chance.
 
The Gazelle searches for a place to hide

somewhere to die in peace before
scavengers arrive to tear away meat
from the warmth of life.

Such an ugly fate for a gentle beast:

watch the blood draining from a dead-eyed dream.

~~~

The Zabbaleen
have been forced to become human garbage.

There are many others like them.

It need not be this way.

Here there are no gods but
mercy could exist. This

makes me ashamed to be human.

What about you?