The Monk That Got Down

Today was strange.
The sweet, quiet, solemn, solitary
monk
who lives in the cork-lined antechamber
inside me
was dancing.
This is not something I have ever seen him do.
I went to visit him,
expecting the usual: him
hunched over his mahogany desk,
pen in hand, eyes narrowed
hawklike tracking the words that
bled black onto his parchment,
but this time I was shocked
when I entered to what could
only be described as monk-funk,
a check-a-chow-check-a-chow-wow-wow
blaxploitation guitar riff, backed by a sledgehammer
bass drum husbanded to cavetemple chants,
and there was my monk, engaged in self-contained
spells of spastic bop, which soon flowered in range
and elasticity, his arms freewheeling Baptist-revival-style,
his sandaled feet doing the hot coal jitterbug,
and if all that wasn’t strange enough,
my monk was wearing a purple three-piece suit,
the kind that stylistically crossed Prince with Dean Martin.
I was astonished.
This was unprecedented.
My monk
had lived inside
the cork-lined antechamber
inside me
since forever,
and not once
had I seen him
wear anything but his brown robes,
nor had I ever seen him
bust a move of any sort.
He was not a move-busting monk,
he was a still and solitary one
who split most of his time
between scribbling on parchment
or meditatively pacing
around the room
staring at
or into
the cork-lined walls
or at
or into
the bare floor,
but really those
were just impressionistic
reference points
for his staring
and dwelling deeper within
himself.
Once when I asked him
if he got lonely,
after all I was his only visitor,
and my visits were few and far between,
he smiled and said—Happylonely
and his crescent smile,
so sweet, so gentle,
made me want to cry.
My monk,
the happylonely, quiet, sweet, solitary
dude,
who, at this very moment, is standing on a chair,
rhythmically pangliding his index
right to left, his other hand slapping
thunder against his thigh as he shimmypops
from knees to chest.
I close the door
and leave my monk
to his impromptu getdown.
Dance motherfucker dance,
I hear him shout
to no one in particular.
I have never heard my monk curse,
nor speak three words in succession.
His radical behavior concerns me.
And excites my sense of wonder.
Does this mean
that the others
living inside me,
the ones whose behaviors and patterns
were regulated and predictable,
their methods of operation
habituated and specific,
does this mean
that they might start
transgressing expectations
and defying conventions
and acting differently?
In what ways
would they act different?
And what will that mean
for me
as their singular, host entity?
I return to the door
of the antechamber
peer through the peephole
and see my monk
dancing freely
and wildly
amidst the parchment
that is now whirling
confetti-like around the room,
and I begin to understand
the true nature of revolution
just a tiny bit more
as I walk away from the door,
smiling,
happy to know
there’s a dancing monk
who lives inside me.
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Opiate

To touch loneliness,
unabated,
the barest cherish,
play of smile
running softly
on meant fingers,
to keep yourself
company,
all that lovely sweet
nothingness,
gauged in lofty
opiate whispers,
trailing, then silence.
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Honeycomb

The deep bass drum
of laughter,
a resounding prayer,
no more forgetting
who I am,
the well of memory
has been stirred,
and my bones,
in turn,
have been dared to splinter,
the cracks between worlds,
widening, inviting me
to overdose on dusk,
and kiss the dew-slipped
faces
of all the fresh flowers
wilding
from my dawnstruck
whirl
and desire
to undress light,
one honeycombed shimmer
at a time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Prayer

Thank you,
is the simplest
and most profound prayer
I know,
borne along
on a sea of breath,
it returns to itself,
the divinest echo
from God’s muse
to my lips.
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Lovesworn

If I could
grow my arms
the length of God
I’d hug
the entire world
until
a cosmic vessel
went bust
and bled light
to no end.
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Wax

Her lips, in kissing,
raspberry wax sealing notes,
for heart’s safekeeping.
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Visitation, 7/12/18

Crawling on my wall,
seven-legged white spider–
your presence is gold.
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Level

Girl, I will write you
for a long, seething bask, Light
seeks its own level.
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Foam

Collect her broken bones,
her sea-washed cortege,
and sentences of charged
glimmer,
and pay close
reverence
to where
the slow, reedy breath
of the pearl
steams the shell
of its host,
and when the time
is right,
just right,
kiss
the unknown lips
of her hidden history,
uncollected
to the tides
palling fringes
of foam
and memory.
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Peony

The peony came
at exactly the right time–
The garden smiled, blushed.

 

 

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