with the colors of red and black,
with her and every word that
has been written.
While I closed my eyes they lifted their
work into the world.
A shiny and pink thing,
eyes closed to the light as well.
In dream late at night
the coyotes sometimes wander.
They are like every chased creature.
They know my chills and fever here in the tower.
In the woods alone, the moon their only light,
They know the hunt comes.
Death will perhaps be their escape.
It will be mine
someday when the rivers part to the sun.
First the stone tower must crumble.
Made when the mothers were still small
and covered in red and gold robes.
Going up stone by stone as the women watched in horror
and the men could not understand the way their hands were working.
The knights came and went from battle on the fields in the distance,
In the cave that was soon to come
I slept and twisted in the sheets,
the silky cotton holding onto my legs
like coils from a monster,
Looking back through the layers of pink and pale green sleet,
I see that it all comes when the process of
life transforms from water into fire.
It was then that culture turned to ash-dwellers,
their imagination curdled
like the fermented cheeses of the herder.
I held my nose, waiting for the skies to clear,
but there would be no respite.
When I closed my eyes they held her in a single palm
All pink and shiny.
She was not formless,
yet she was without shape.
She could be all that we wanted.
We could mold her like a ball of clay and
on her the metal gates would begin to change.
Who was black would become white.
The white ones would turn to ash.
The orange embers would burn until
moisture would find its way in and turn them to rain.
It was more than they could understand,
and of course they blamed the horns
as they all must.
But it was I who dreamt it all.
I who had closed my eyes and the doors
and went into the worlds
where process moves like water over stone,
like leaves shifting from green to yellow to red.
It was never clear and straight and tidy,
the roads shifted and turned narrow sometimes
when passing through trees
and I took the bends and bridges easily,
sometimes jumping over patches of wildflowers.
They would want to blame the horns
and the pink puddle of clay,
but it was the dreams
and the woman who slept
and it was I who imposed structure
unto the canvas of time.
It was not for me to explain,
perhaps not for them
to ever understand.
That was never the intention, never the goal.
I took the forking roads, sometimes splitting myself into
three or four, taking all paths at once
just to see.
Unlike hounds they could have opened their eyes,
they could have waved to me from their nightmares
and we could have glanced under the bridges together.
I used to lift their faces skyward
hoping they could see the stars.
Could they see the ends of the earth?
The end of their own flesh?
When the last word is written
everyone will know of the tower and the dream
and the lump of pink clay.
A sign has spoken,
the guard knows the word
and will let them pass.
They knew me once,
they knew of my dreams.