And my arms would lean against the bronze horizon,
and build an alphabet of falling leaves. Smell the rose
with your whole body, the regenerated odors,
memorize the scents in their original order: the resin,
pine, the warmth of autumn apples blown from far off,
because everything comes from far off now
in shades of amber leaves poured unto us
like vintage wines that stop the somnolence of summer,
1909, the year that collapsed our lives to quantum time.
Oh, number these new constellations, and then reduce
once more unto the ever-prime: the toc to tic,
the Z to A, the light that moves about a word
of dark, the primal act, the apple’s fall and lunar arc.
That is ideal closeness: the wind filling up our hands,
the gustatory gusts blown away against our mouths,
the mass of words gathered up and moved
before the old taboo. Don’t ask to know
the nowhere of my face: My eyes are nothing
like the sun. My flesh is not a jade-smooth stone.
I will promulgate pronunciamentos, retrodict
that in my poems I spoke to you of song
through light years of scents without a source
and winds without a name; repeal the lex and law
and tell this story twice, the same
but in reverse: Be the wind when I blow
my flute for you upon your ancient airs
for lute and violin, the lightning when I strike
my drum in dusk, and strike again
as rainsticks pour through primal rites. Do you feel
me coming through, like streams of photons
of radiation that escapes its own black hole?
I have waited aeons… the light appears again.
The light appears and cannot fade.
But if all things have a limit, length, and law,
a lex, rex, and proud expounder, already there is nothing left
of what once was, and time itself is through with us.
Over and done. So tonight I write final lines
unto the exeunt omnes: All things come back
from the beginning, in shades of amber leaves poured unto us
through gusts that speak the words no earthly lexicons define.
Smell the rose with your whole body, the regenerated odors,
memorize the scents in their original odor:
the resin, pine, the sculpted silence grown on silence
in the gardens of repose. Everything
arrives from the middle of the field
to touch the center of being, as if we lived
and were young again, and breathed again, and felt
the sonnet’s turn and planet’s tilt, as if
our disembodiments of voices played hide-and-seek
amongst disappearances of sky, from sun to moon
to sun again, from apoapsis to periapsis,
whether my yes or your no, my no or your yes. The words
make little difference for being spoken
by the golden spirals of a thousand-petaled rose.
Forget our faces, past, and names.
Come end the human rite of shame.