~ THE RAVENS’ AVIARY
or,
‘Stones, Disassembled’

The ravens are devouring the cloves
we misplaced yesterday.
Maybe there are two of them, but beneath
the branches there are always more.
The lovers — just the lovers — with
their hollow-born bones,
throw out caution, replace it with passion
as stones carry them into the heart
not of each other, but of earth.
Because dust and its manufactured
debris skim the surface of what
we recognize,
do we pinpoint our subtle selves
in their tattered wings?
Do we feather ourselves in their shadows?

Years later they remember,
even if we forget,
hidden in our own somber or giddy
contemplations.

Our contemplations…
We are as good as dead to anyone
who cannot see that love begins
over,
over; —
like smoke that masks the fire
but mimics hidden desire in a glass house,
our laughter makes
inane men mute from pallid inquiry.
How can they know?
How can they burn in the primal coil
that defines nothing other than touch,
or intensive discovery?

The reality of the burn,
the strike of the match,
the effervescent prion that propagates a wild
return.
We are nothing (everything),
iridescent and trite but salient by birth.
(Are we?)

Sorrow.
Being.
Transience.
A furlough of cohesive elements.

None of it reminds
us of anything we can hold onto.
And grief burrows her soft signs
into the alchemy of our minds.

No matter the years, it is always new,
and, piecemeal, like kitchenware,
we turn ourselves outward
with the shine of our
intimations; —
similar to the ravens pulling the
taproot with their black beaks, clawing
the earth in their search for carrion.

But all they find in us is a bloodless genesis,
without flesh, earthy in its spread.
We, the ones who come from stone,
our voices hushed from tongues
of archaic temperance,
aged by isotopic carbons and silence,
we are messy and wild and free.
And we need nothing but transient
dialogues of the earth to speak,
to open the ravens’ mouths and reveal the shine
of our skins buried in the fabric of their beaks.

While the birds spiral,
their speeches slung in the high arches
of the aviary, —
we, cartilage, bone, fermented debris
hurled against hammer-lock tempests
on the shores of the deep,
disassemble in the bright chasms of the
ancient sea.

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