our visits with the wolf
have happened less and less
over the years, long or
otherwise. at first, we
waited. that absence defined
those hours, then weeks. now,
the visits are what they are,
transient and happy, but
the truths the wolf brings
still hold the same bite.
we knew, in instances, those
who fell and those who stood.
the stories that persisted,
that ground themselves into
the dirt, the path burned
by passing, the footstep
crush of grass and convenience.
that’s where we found the wolf,
persisting in what we knew
to be incorrect. it wasn’t,
but it took us years
we swore much, dedications to gods,
lower case or otherwise, and gave
our fealty, blood bound, neatly cut
and stacked to causes, nations,
people. we knew what we’d
break, and what we wouldn’t. it was
a renaissance of creative interpretation,
legalese, fine print of promises
sworn by an honest, but unwilling
figure eight of flowing ink, words
of slate, rock cliff crushed
to nothing in our hands,
an apology that vines
faced and denied, refuted
need in the name of hurts
not made, but felt, till time
brings understanding — what
and who the words are for
isn’t always clear while
they’re being said.
shift from life to live
alongside the sediment,
the rock we sought
to know. changes drip
through the earth and touch
all that’s come before. care
take the darkness, burrow
beneath the wreckage, love
places that can’t be touched
by the living. walk with
the dead, what they were
before the winds shifted
and left them here. here,
here we found the quiet.
let’s make a go of this, morning
one, bringer of light. you,
most beloved, and us, the shale.
impermanent mollusc lives, washing
up across your shores. what does
that feel like? we knew what
you did in spilling blood in
heaven, but the why would be nice.
wolf, you brought me fresh silence
stretched and torn with little pockets
of gravity and star-stuff. it’s mostly new,
i think, more deliberate and considered
than i’m used to. we’ll come to know it well,
wear out the spine till it refuses to close
completely, in well-read protest. sketch
some battle lines in fitted quiet.
silence, insurrection. over hilltops
we’ve swarmed, down city streets,
waved placards in front of more
or less everywhere. after all
that noise, silence feels alien
and yet we’re getting used to it.
indifference is the face of god,
lower case, observant and uncaring.
the fury grows despite ourselves,
and all we say comes to pass,
and nothing’s done. i’m just
writing, doing nothing, i’ve no claim
to struggle other than that i made
for myself. i am owed nothing
and they are owed the world.
calamity woke us – below,
always below. corridors, halls,
all paths eventually twisted
to us. now they’ll twist for us.
the water grows dark, castle walls
fall, and we decide to keep swimming.
stand amongst, bare thought,
honest. it’s all you’ve got,
rainfall, thunder, giants. guide,
bring us – yourself – to edges,
yours, jagged little tears. learn
the precision of them, run hand
along the frills and cuts, then,
then you’ve a map, and nothing
on the road can surprise you.
we’re all old gods
if that meant something,
we’re all points, scratching
wrists to jigsaw piece
conversations. bright light
of midnight phone text app
thoughts that mean something,
books on broken pagan statues
and unhelpful narratives and
mostly blank notebooks, at least
half, can’t write on the left it’s
wrong i wonder
if gods have panic attacks.