Errant Nights (Pilgrims in an Unholy Land)

                              i. Divide

It takes a pilgrimage to raise a reviled soul,
     an old highway of crippled hordes to heal
     what I’ve felt, what I still feel in this life—this whole
     world having let me down, drowning fivefold

     what I’d expected to be more, corporeal
     works merciless in their chore—what seems real
     isn’t, it’s this less-than ideal taking its toll
     on and from me, making such a great deal

     seem worse than alternatives written off by those
     scribes whose accounts of a better life steal,
     instead of borrow, from heretics who outsold
     heaven, untamed sages whose famed scrolls hold

     lessons in verse none but fallen heroes who wield
     pens like weapons can open, can unseal—
     I’m talking about those saints called caustic apostles
     because they speak truth and refuse to kneel.

                              ii. Conquer

Wise eyes pricking thick glares through logic’s buttonhole,
     I’ve seen hate, and I hate what I still see,
     pride in a lie—a tumor the size of a full
     moon sweating silver onto tongues they pull

     in as hard as the kneecaps they break, late people
     advanced in age but delayed in their feat,
     accomplishing nothing but deceit, no self-control
     of which to speak, since none can think or feel—

     automaton hearts raging to the beat one stole
     that all keep, magnetic minds drawn to steel
     like blind beggars to a banquet, dragging their bowls—
     such is the pilgrimage poets follow,

     passing through neon avenues fit to conceal
     their glowing flesh from what dusk would reveal,
     live-nudes and triple-x bathing penitent soles,
     greasing our napalm path through battlefields.