Four am and I'm looking up at the Big Dipper through veils of smoke
whisps of steam from a hot bath over rocks
this is what we do out here for fun
the others are laughing, drinking, getting high
I am on the side of the frame again
putting my ears underwater to hear my own thoughts
blood rushing outside my ears for once from the water.
there was this afternoon
red streaked cheeks asking me about faith
spirituality, how can I believe in a fairytale G-d
a wrathful one
a detatched fat man smiling maniacly at buffet restaurants
or a pagan appropriated hair product for sheen figure?
Too many wretched events march on without a coming again
or a princess lotus blossom of tranquility unfolding.
How---how can there be any force greater than
this planet spinning in an unknowable sea of blackness?
Lying in the bath, looking up at what we call constellations
I feel the familiar panic rising up from my chest
flowering in my throat and head
my own drum skipping beats
I, too will die and disappear
into...what's the answer?
The prickle comes, bursts,
yawns a swallowing mouth akin to fear around me.
What I didn't tell her is that my faith lies in the moment
of my mortality spell
The fact that it is temporary and leaves
may be a rational grace
a tick of a clock
the fall of a raindrop on a leaf
the very-few hours lifespan of a butterfly
the cicada's 17yrs of underground living, just for the chance
to rise, molt,and fuck.
How can I have explained
the myriad of ways a body knows how to leave
systems turning out the lights
the way when a body drowns, it fights
or when a shell falls, the neck breaks
so there isn't any consciousness?
My faith doesn't have intervention
or rely on reason for being as much
as design, fractal
as much as life force
seasonal shift, perpetual recycling
the fact of a deer siting
the book opening to the exact page you needed
for a memorial service
the way ghosts talk back to you
through other people & what happens when you think of them.
None of my answers
My mosaic is not what I expressed
Instead, I lent her my arms for vertebra quake
and the unrolling salt tide.
I said something about the persistence of green
the celebration of colors in spring
& how there are just some answers
we're just not meant to receive until we trip over them.
We have each other
dry twigs for bonfires
vices to dull our senses
and jackal laughter
in the meanwhile
with the elements until we join them.
I lie back, voices moving closer
4am moving toward 5
whisps joining the stars
the pull away fromthe edge of the frame
to the center.