The Nacreous Oughts

02 April 2009

"The Dead King Hunts and Eats the Gods"

The dust i brushed one day
off a new-cut pane of glass
is long since dissipated now:
not so, the tiny splinter which it left.

O, hours of digging never brought it to light
until at last, defeated i had to admit
i'd carry for the rest of my natural term
this deep-hid jewel in my palm.

The jewel in my palm but seldom pains me;
the jewel in my palm unfits me for work.
The jewel in my palm i wasn't born with
has grown its own cocoon and means to stay.

Shall i describe the jewel in my palm
i've never seen and yet's most intimate?
The jewel in my palm is always silent
except when i'd forget its constant lurk.

No scar reveals where it conspired entry
and should i dare deny, no one could tell
that there's a stranger here who also holds
the heft of everything i take to hand.

But i've found uses for this trespassed jewel
undreamt of when i swung my careless palm:
it links me to the far approach of thunder
and touches me where Time has closest swerve.

The jewel in my palm i would have planted
on purpose if i'd known its final aim,
sometimes makes me wish to sooner free it
but not to rid my palm and grasp without.

For when the phasing of my seasons falters,
this hourglass-fill of sands within my form
will finally have been sent to join the first dust
i scattered in the air so long ago.

The jewel in my palm will start another
less passive journey then, through finer flesh,
and glass of fiery origin that it is,
nothing but fire can stop it--to fire will go.


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