Friday, February 01, 2008

Lojong Poems: Eight


Lojong Poems: Eight

Understand your attachments, your aversions, all your indifferences, and love them all.

I. Flesh

These bones, a framework
upon which this flesh hangs,
crave her touch :: sharing
of cells with a woman
I once knew.

This craving, like thirst,
returns again and again,
never slaked,
never forgotten,
only bandaged by the touch
of other hands :: not hers.

This body is not me.
And yet I wear it
as a fine garment,
a silk robe,
a symbol of something
that can never be seen.

II. Decay

The minute hand moves
so quickly, without remorse.
Clouds roll across the sky
as though these days
mean nothing.

What will I become?
Will these bones crumble
to dust while I am sleeping?

Will I never feel her touch
in the cool light of morning?
Hear her voice
mock my self-importance?

The cruel procession of minutes
rips my heart from these ribs,
leaves me sitting
in a dark corner
amid dust and cobwebs,
wishing time were an illusion.

III. Loss

Wrinkles gather around my eyes
and my beard is mostly gray.

I've quit checking the mirror
for the predictable signs.

I'm resigned to this empty apartment
and the absence of her body beside me.

IV. Acceptance

I am learning to love the ache.

I may never see her again,
smell her hair,
enjoy her hand in mine.

I awaken to the cooing
of mourning doves,
the clamor of quail
foraging for food.

My 40 days in the desert
are long past :: and what remains
is the need :: the quest
to know, that even in loss
I am whole,
filled with Eros,
not merely alone.

I am learning to love this ache.

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