Your spine-a fossil flower stem-shifts:
you turn on your side in sleep.
Light shimmers on your brows,
engrailed shields of light
& the dropping away to darkness around each soft eye pit,
the charcoal smudge on rich rag vellum flesh
draws me near to observe your face
relaxed, softly unhinged, uncannily direct-
as bird song beyond midnight is direct-
Behind it that clinch of bone
that could make an old man melancholy
loves me too, I know, presses close so that I
suck my teeth in concern,
for welts rise upon bone & stone & mineral integument,
the starry flail falls without warning
upon us. Ships are known to founder in the tented seas
churn away the even shoulders of our island
with every wave unrolling feathered thunder
& the moon siphons forth crystalline fire
from the underpinnings of our rest. Cruel, cruel. Even your hair
feels like toothed rain.
You do not move, but remain Euclidean in repose, safe though
meteors strike the outer layers of our atmosphere and take fire,
tumbling end over end at us, slowly at first, then as dreams
blazing towards utterance & so justify the tongue's vague arching
beneath the palate as I see one flash across the void in this rented room
& attempt to describe it to you in a whisper
you cannot help but ignore. You escape the Agony of Matter
like a leaf in a block of salt,
your repose is of one dreaming of deep water, though all you see
within the domes of your half-closed lids will remain
beyond the descriptive powers of a sleep-torn mouth at dawn.
I open the palmate structure of my bones like a music box
so the dancing beads of blood move tenderly in their circuits, and await
the deconstruction of the hour, for you are my meditation upon a blank wall,
my fuming away of every eventuality
& lovely death of machines. Never kiss me. Never open your eyes.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
lives and works in Japan. Against the Agony of Matter
was featured in the sound track of a recent film by Film Gruppe Chaos.