The St Francis Series, #7

of the birds in your hand 
and the hares at your feet 
you’ll stroke only them 
and i, alone, crave 
only to touch only your feet 

of the calf by your side 
lashes long over eyes brown and wide 
do you not see me in that calf? 
did you not see my eyes also brown and wide? 
i see 
i know 
you did 
and turned your own inside 

of the rabbit at the left foot of you 
would-be god, 
begged i, 
sprung i, 
at your voice 
but you saw me not 
and withheld your nod 

of the sparrow at hover 
at the level of your eye 
have you idea what it took for me to fly? 
before i met you, impossible, nigh 
but at first meeting, 
before inquisition, 
so light in the sky was i 

of the owl at your right hand 
oh would-be god 
did you not see me so clearly? 
of course you did you failed, failed man 
but preferred me kneeling 

and the mouse in your hair 
did you not feel me rooting for crumbs 
in the maze of your wildness unbooting 
of your tillings un-fooding 
of your walkways un-sure-footing? 

and the rat in your vestment 
did you not feel my nails? 
as i went scrounging for some route, some way 
to touch you at the entrails? 

of the mosquito at your thigh 
did you not feel when i sipped your blood like wine 
for nourishment before you i did never find? 

oh saint 
oh saint 
oh taker and painter of my heart 
paints of lead and taint and shame 

oh man of peace and carver of heart, 
you left me in this place 
while you journeed apart and you smelled new places and saw new faces 
while i boxed and blindered tasted only my heart 
you have sky and steps to take you from yourself away 
while i trapped here rot and pray 
oh man of peace 
i prithee, release 

oh man of peace 
you have scrape of bark and song of lark 
while i recline only on this stone seat and consume the glacial remains of my heart 
for alms failing 
alone in this life without spark 

oh man of peace 
you sit upon grass 
you tread the open air 
while the difference here is 
one sees that the stone, 
but not i, 
does weep 
and it, the stone, 
but not you, 
has cares and affairs 

oh man of peace 
oh would-be god 
please loose the rod 
please end our rot 
what abstemious us 
should justly have sought 

and i am ever cold 
and i am ever ill 
without hunger and less with will 
and past hunger are my empty breasts 
inward did they fold 

on days when the stone is dry 
then i am wet 
weeping from my legs during an escapèd dream 
of you and me and 
the floor of the woods upset 

oh would-be god 
do you know the every month where my heart runs out and 
could i 
would i 
put it in a cup 
and bring me to your lips 
oh would-be god 
and me, it’s me 
on which i need you sip 

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