My friend a writer and scientist
has retreated to a monastery
where he has submitted himself
out of exhaustion to not knowing.
He’s been thinking about
the incarnation a.k.a. Big Bang
after hearing a monk’s teaching
that crucifixion was not the hard part
sign up to receive a new poem-a-day in your inbox
Stairway to Heaven
The queen grows fat beneath my house while drones infest the walls reconnaissance to feed her glut, wood ripped from studs and joists. I’ll pay to drill the slab and ruin her pestilential nest. How to find the song in this day’s summons? I’ve been accused of darkness by my inner light. My brother sits in the chemo chair another long day of toxic infusion, the house of his body— bones, brain and balls gone skeltering. I sit in my parked car listening to Robert Plant recall how the English envied the Americans for getting the blues, getting all of it, into song. I remember the dream where brother and sister, adult and equal, lean and white as lilies, as bare, dove into a mountain lake, black water, high elevation, fir trees growing in flood water that had joined two lakes into one. Do you ever dream of animals, I ask him, hospice bed looking out on a plywood squirrel perched on cement block wall. Frequently. A lilt of surprising joy. What kind? Mostly the jungle animals. Then: I’m going to do my exercises now. What exercises? I like pacing, he said, immobilized upon his death nest of nine pillows. Then he closed his eyes to become the inward one whose only work was to wear a pathway back and forth within his enclosure.