As above, so below, the tree full of good and evil
so ripe it will drop on its own in the
shudder of leaves with sunlight
playing across the skin of fertile ground.
If God walks in the garden, will he spy?
We will peel off the layers of truth and lies.
How long since we walked together
naked and unafraid into the bruised elbow of night?
How long should I carry the blame of sin on my shoulders
only by listening to slick whispers of the serpent
who opened my eyes wide?
He said I would walk in dumb silence
with words that disappear into the sky like spent bullets.
So all around I watched the garden crumble
into cities and worlds no one believed,
green all turned gray and grids of mechanical men,
my story scrawled on a bathroom stall with numbers.
The heartbeat smack of the el trains — a ballad and a dirge —
where a million sit alone in windows, stark outlines
against some cheap bulb, watching trains go by,
thinking of me, or a mother, or the Holy Virgin
or nothing at all.
Where your lust became the hunger of myriads
who dream, hate, blame,
unzip shame in front of dark windows —
a release and a curse
blacks out the sins of the fathers
into misogynist trails of glowing lies,
spent seeds on the tile.
Graffitti psalms fall on deaf ears, blind eyes…
It all comes full circle like spinning swords of seraphs at the garden gate.
Take me back, or all the way forwards, you who really see me.
East, west, back and forth on the rails of time
to a beginning or a revelation.