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I

THE ESSENCE

Your rainbow irises are the surfaces of dead, living planets
The dark pupils in the center of those are
The black of space and the black cloud, fall, or emptiness of death
The bright that radiates from them also lights
The violent, ephemeral globes we call stars.
The sometimes-blue of your eyes is the
Sometimes-blue of the skies
Like the tambour of the beating of your heart
Is the same deep-bass, quiet, deafening, subterfuge art
Of the hot center of the Earth, always churning.

The smooth ridges and gullies of your body are
The dunes of the world’s deserts or the waves of its oceans
Frozen in a moment
The hairs that populate, adorn, and spread over you
Are the grasses of hills and valleys,
Fjords and slopes, prairies and steppes,
And the vines that sweep garden floors,
Enwrap trees, decorate man-made buildings
Young and old.

Your blood, so fast-, slow-, red-flowing like
Your bones, so hard, thick, joined, like
Your nerves, so sensitive, complex, rooted, like
Your lungs, so filled and emptied like
Your heart, so rhythm-circulating, beating like
Your brain, so creating art out of nothing like

Music, or, that force which binds everything,
Everything that Is, Is Not, and everything
That does not count, does not care
For the context in the question
Of Is or Is Not.

You have born, lived, died,
Breathed, bled, consumed and digested and been consumed and digested by,
Conceived, known, doubted, denied,
Experienced, been,
Smelt, tasted, touched, heard, seen,
Intuited,
All the Essence
Like every man before and after you,
Like the cosmos has done to you.

II

HOW EVERY ACTION IS IMPOSSIBLE AND IS YOURS.

You are standing outside the temple, haughty. You stand at the center of the altar in the temple, too. You, who built it and watched it built, who carried some of the weight of every brick on your back and watched with no care as massive bricks were carried. You who, round and round, round and gauged, turned in the machine, pulling the rope, transporting bricks to great heights. You, who felt the gears turning in you, bore the weight with no pain; but you get older every day, with every use of your ropes, joints, and pulleys. You stand and fall with no pleasure or pain.

You, the King, cringe slightly as you hear booms and crackles from the cloud of dust building around your temple collapsing. Your pride is hurt. You, the Priest, in the few moments before the bricks come tumbling down to crush you, as the dust pours on your robe, hope dearly that your gods will save you. You, the Slave, feel, besides that immediate flush of eye-opening heat, a mix of sadness that you never had a chance of doing what you wanted and yet some relief that the pain your life has been will finally be relieved.

You, the Gear, are an accomplice in the action as you turn for the hundred thousandth time and your friction cuts the rope. You, the Machine, do not care for anything, especially not the release of energy just then that everyone is calling an accident, a mistake, an error because you know errors don’t exist. You, the Temple erect and the Temple collapsed, know that your glory remains no matter your configuration and that sun shines on what they call rubble and corpses the same as it does on what they call beautiful, angular, sacred walls and men.

III

WHY I MUST STOP WRITING.

You are my face in the glass as I look out my window from my desk. You are the hard surface of my desk and the paper on which I write and the pen in my hand and the ink in the pen that spills onto the pages. You are the movements of my hand when I touch the pen to the page and form my letters, words, phrases, clauses, sentences, paragraphs, pages, chapters, parts, books. You are my brain translating my thoughts, telling my nerves, muscles, and bones how to form those symbols in those left-to-right lines. You are my thoughts, which makes you every character feeling every way and still doing every thing in every scenario I write for every time and every setting. You are all my devices, tricks, conflicts, and resolutions. You are all the messages I obscure or conceal, or don’t have at all. Your beginning may be a capital letter, but your end is only my strongest punctuation mark.

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