Weeds grow where they want to; not where they're told to...


John Swain


Preparation of the Ashes


Scythes parted the trees before the world opened

and we received clairvoyance from silver vapors,

the bright day colored your face like a cured leaf.

Sun burned a hawk shadow on the dry watershed,

tomorrow morning I will have to dig another well

as breezes twist our scented washings on the line.

Men found enchantment around your linen dress,

so I explained to them your night before the caliph,

only our angel was stoned by the people in town.

With water from a basin you dampened strips of cloth

as I lit lamps like a watcher measuring our distance,

the scars of this undress astounded me with beauty.

We clamor in the kinship of bronzed leaved arms

reminiscent of the wafer and the camphor bewitched,

I wished you would have placed upon my tongue.




White Cloth


I purchased white cloth

to lay across the rain

like the tomb of a queen.

Released from the sky,

we delight

in immaterial textures

borne by our gated mind.

Water became our veil

to touch contemplation

like pears at your lips.




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