The skin between our world
and the one above is thin, drawn tight
like a drum head, and the gods and
demons fling their bodies against it
and we fling ours, creating thunderous
rhythms portending another round
of catastrophe and war
as our precious planet
wobbles on its axis.
The skin is thick between our world
and the one beneath, hard as wood
and stone; we wail and gnash
while the waiting dead bang their bones
below, but all that’s heard by those
waiting their turn to die is the anxious tapping
of polished fingernails on an office desk.
I was barely three,
the moon cast shadows
through the bars of my crib
and I awoke with a choking pain
in my throat and memories of the
smell of gun powder, the whistle
of falling bombs, shrieks of pain,
and your eyes, so wide and
beautiful and wet the last time
I saw them, then separation
by concrete and barbed wire.
I remembered the way the noose chafed
my neck as I fell into the darkness
for uttering some treason against
the demons walking our world
in ties and suits.
I silently sucked my thumb,
didn’t cry out for mom,
hugged the memory into my heart
and went back to sleep.
Our skeletons have crawled through mud
and rotting flesh in the dark, through time
and space, and between that lifetime and this
we found ourselves alive but alone,
again separated by walls thrown up
in another violent conflict gripping
the passions of this planet’s
love starved mortals.
Always searching, always choking
back the truths rising from my heart,
I’d begun to think my secret
memory had been only a bad dream
until we found each other, the instant
recognition of each other’s light
reflected in our eyes. You
I could sing again
for the first time in
lifetimes, and speak
in a soft voice the truth
from my heart.
We are immortal
and I love you.
I will always love you.
–Radiant Spleen, 2014