Filth Causes Imbalance of the Humours

                              i. Melancholic

At his feet, parted like a pass beneath
     his mountain’s peak, towering like a stoned
     king propped up on an ancient wind-worn throne,
     a squall moves over the wintered path like
     god’s desolate breath over death’s frozen
     waters, offering up silence to his
     blizzard, painting it blank in doubt, calling
     from hiding my throat’s ribbon riding out
     the storm like an ill poem laid upon
     a magic carpet, flapping forth its verse
     to keep the hours until, and in the hope
     that, the doctor will show, bringing his cures.

                              ii. Supine

A good physician is nature’s servant,
     grinding down herbs which rise as pleasant scent
     into foul air, turning silence into
     song: ‘Our experiences must each be
     digested by the digestive fire,’
     sages chant as they take from broken bones,
     from thick marrow what tomorrow only
     knows, a singing medicine which always
     flows back to its source, the heart’s own furnace,
     where burns a light purifying forces
     entering the body by hand or mind,
     when taking turns they find hid holiness.

                              iii. Sanguine

‘Filth causes imbalance of the humours,’
     pages of unwritten lessons emerge
     from vagrant lips flipping open buried
     centuries of healing too long unheard,
     and at his feet pilgrims sit listening,
     into feeble but willing ears are poured
     what for them, as for me, floods an old sore,
     whispers suturing with lines of comfort
     not even jewels, nor a wealth of pearls,
     can contend with to absorb all that pain
     driven into a soul by cruel words
     an unforgiving world sends as a curse.

                              iv. Phlegmatic

At his feet, parted like a pass beneath
     his mountain’s peak, following sheep behind
     an outcrop’s bend I find him, a silent
     mage mirroring the hazy horizon,
     his beard all cloud, falling down, denying
     sunlight exposure to his snow-covered
     flesh, as white as it is soft, drawing me
     instead to tumble into its broad bank,
     his nakedness rich with a wealth my eyes take
     to mean he is perfect, a tear dropped on
     hallowed ground and risen now as a man
     blowing up heaven’s skirt to bring down love.

                              v. Choleric

Conscious of the power of his passion,
     I fall profoundly into a deep bow,
     my face and my heavy head embracing
     their origin as I taste of his mound
     in which I bury my tongue and there find
     solace resounding, a chorus that knows
     of its performance how transformative
     genuflection before one’s creator
     can be, healing my erotoleptic
     parakritic by eating each other
     like tortoises devouring lotuses,
     he treats me whenever god refuses.