Now she knows those marks have names,
They are called harm
Now they have a name she feels them
The feeling; pain
From the pain runs scarlet rivers
The rivers; blood
The blood, it once belonged to something
That thing; a heart
Where the heart that first did send them?
That heart is gone
Lost inside a white bone forest
Nearly still
Underneath a tent of skin
And that beneath no silk but sky
There is no name for her nakedness
It has not been spoken, yet
Her shame is severed from her outline
Becomes discrete and like a man
In sackcloth, lays across me now
Breast to breast, we become
One flesh. Not by my will, but still I
Break to hear the things he says
Things about that still, white shape
The shape I should have somehow saved
He spills the seed of rage and fear,
Into the vault of my body, where
My heartache runs up on the banks
Through thresholds and up over windows
Of all the places I have built
Inside myself, to keep me safe
And guilt; I can do less than nothing
Uses me like a filament
Burns through me until I am nothing
But a desolation of myself

I wish her almost quiet heart
Would howl, would tear the world apart
But she just lays there, vainly bleeding
Until her ratty heart shucks life
Time becomes divorced from rhythm
The deep horizon of a line
She was lost before I found her
I tell myself, again, again
I am so changed from being near her
She belonged to no-one and
Was, somehow, still mine to mend
She had no name but harm and pain
I had a name, but that is gone now
Fury is what’s left inside me
By that name I am baptized

I did wreck and I did burn
Beat down the door of
God’s high mountain
I did scorch my cross to ashes
I did salt the fertile ground
But Elohim did not berate me
He led me to the tall, sweet grass
He laid me down, He sat beside me
And, empty, I did sleep at last.
His spirit hovered over me
Into my hands He spoke a dream
Into my flesh He sewed the truth
Into my bones He wrote his name
This I dreamed, I dream it still

From the cathedral of my body
Under buttresses of rib and spine
Not from my womb, but those four chambers
Where beat the drums of hope and life
Stirs a thing, a tiny zephyr
It feels like her, but she is mine
Now grows the heat, fast ripening
I lay upon the rock of Earth
Un-der the Black Locust tree
And rusted moons, my legs were mountains
From them came the child of pain,
Made from hollow Fury and
That inky, oily shadow; Shame
At first I was afraid to hold her
What kind of child could come from this
But some bud of ancient, primal instinct
Bade me draw her to my chest

And how the scales of Fury crumbled

The itch of shame fell impotent
My breath hung frozen, lip and lung
Dazzled by that smallest star
Cradled in the near orbit
Of her mother’s arms


She’s beautiful
A perfect, lovely little pearl

Cradled her, did I, in wonder

Shame has no power over this
For here our Pain
Is born again
She has a name
It’s Innocence 

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