Rivers of You

It thunders through me, like I remember it always doing. No stopping it, this upwelling like some lost sailor pulled to the surface by generous bonds, pushed by moonlight to the shore. Washed up in way that no orderly line can capture, full of fragments and broken pieces of belonging that need now, briefly, to be placed together.

Some secrets must be let out the chest eventually.

I have always known, never felt before such a need to undo. Not to reveal, or give away meaninglessly the contents of encrusted time. Only to nudge, to play my feet against it as we did that summer, tangled in sheets and sweat and blazing sun. Walking out later to watch the stars dance on tiny wavelets in the night wind over sand and mirrors and so much past.

It was with me that moment the dream died by an old river, waiting for what I still cannot name. For what is nameless, just longing and love and the sense of something left over from the start.

To be a lightning rod for time. To sit and wonder at the humility of lichen, knowing that it, too, will light up in a certain slant of sunset. To have kissed a book and meant it, deeply. To love the dead and sing them lullabies so that we might all remember what once it was to live.

True hope is without expectation.

So much more to do with rhythm than with the kind of sense you have been trained to expect. Way beyond comprehension lies the silent line of truth. A breaking wave at sundown and a shoulder dipped into the foaming gold to pull across the curved surface and come to gliding rest beneath the dunes.

And here, the love who will slowly undress my spirit, bring my body back to belief. To the unspoken knowledge that what separates leaf from air, salt from skin, is not a gap but a seal. That living by lies or by truth makes no difference, so long as it is not a person’s depths you discover, but their ascent. We carry each and every generation in our blood.

How many years before the spirit forgets the body?

There is no way to say what is known right now, no means to reach the outside world from here, buried as we are in the hearts of others. No memory to lean on, not even music. Just the compulsion to put words together magnetically, feeling forces that can’t be seen and learning again to love each letter of the alphabet, though it contains so many tears.

How could it be otherwise, for the lover who believes so completely in language?

There is no ordinariness to return to, no refuge from the blind potency of things now. It is all as one: an old sword-maker reciting stories in time with folded steel. Each line precisely timed – the story a recipe for what must be done. Everything is malleable in the end.

Compulsion and revelation have more in common that we think.

Here lies the catastrophe of grace and a kabbalist who believes only in the power of incantation. A singer of a dark language to match the music, now returned, of a distant harp played by a pilgrim outside the gates to a new city. Still in the early morning and full of strange smells. Beckoning.

Lucid torture and utter freedom, sealed like salt and skin with the recipe for honey cake, passed on in secret through the rivers of you.

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