Locating the Luz Bone

In the human body there is a very small bone called Luz by the Hebrews,
                    which is the size of a pea, and is incorruptible,
                                        also it is not capable of being damaged by fire, but always remains unhurt.
                                                            According to Jewish tradition, when the dead are raised,
                                                                                our new bodies will sprout from it as plants do from seeds.

                    You two had something that had to be kept on ice, yes, incorruptible, yes!—
                                        and death was the only icebox where you could keep it.

                    a. Infra dig

Trashed mannequins, inspiration’s
last flashes coughing codices
of ashes, love’s interloping
highwaymen stiffing hard world-class
museums for one-last/closing-
time glimpses of hieroglyphic
passages inscribed by some tomb’s

                    ancient robbers on the lintels
                    of temple portals only our
                    own hubris can open, or so
                    we insisted to foreigners

and bored guards, tourists not about
to go home or get deported
for having gone overboard with
our learning working them, over-
educated skinheads, under-
stimulated punks turning West
Germany’s postwar implosion

                    into our personal hangout
                    like refugee vermin, we were
                    the infestation, those highly
                    perceptive doormen, quick-witted

light-in-the-loafer soldiers armed
only with genius, eidetic
memories, and—by George!—that bold
Hanoverian brand of pure
insanity—madness of kings
exterminating our boredom
pissing people off with the rich

                    purple of our myths, not-giving-
                    a-shit as if being stoned made
                    martyrs of misfits, porphyry
                    were a malady, and we were

the last of a dynasty, the
crass emissaries of Hermes
or Sisyphus, Pluto’s wise-ass
descendants going down like suns
whose hearts were set on burning out
together, two wonder-workers
too clever to not be worshipped

                    or remembered, both shouldering
                    the heavier burden of our
                    parents’ (de)generation, of
                    another era’s worse boulders

those well-hung heroes shrugging off
the lingering chill of the Cold
War, singing of something more than
this, something more than lust and its
politics, fists crushing cola
cans, brick phone-toting shitheads, thick-
skinned cigarettes, smouldering fags

                    with swollen pricks, rolling bones in
                    smoking graves, braving cameras
                    with smug faces and drunken faith
                    slammed sober by profound thoughts and

underwhelming epiphanies
paradoxes made all the more
perplexing when becoming one
refusing to accept talk of
personal transformation, of
the mere mention of some inner
alchemy, puking peonies

                    perfuming wastepaper baskets
                    we are the remnant, the shredded
                    evidence of desecrated
                    talismans, the legends or what’s

left of them when the spin doctors
fixers, and magicians draw closed
the curtains, ironing out lies
polishing the whys and parting
lines, Jägerbombing embassies
we had that East Berlin circa
’89 sort of vibe, Lord knows

                    b. Fraktur

the sort of unkindness, how we
did nothing to hide it or why
knowing time, if not right, was primed
to let slide out our demise, that
words which sound alike, lay on tongues
homophonic signs sighing at
once things unheard of before, and

                    language somehow so familiar
                    and unnerving that our birds, when
                    uncaged, took harder than all of
                    our friends could, a mouth’s intimate

performance of wet phonetic
cabala locating for us
from within, the Luz bone itself
unfolding like a petal from
inside the prisons of our own
minds, a walled garden of newfound
mysticism whose earthen floor still

                    burns barefoot whatever truth we
                    sought and yet seek, whose flowers we
                    held in our hands, eating seed, palms
                    filling our souls with the scent of

their resurrection, of our own
nearly-grown men weeping wells while
lifting the veil, dropping jars of
balm crushed by circumstance, ointment
blurring the screen, flesh throwing green
language into blue movies, clay
subtitling our forlorn need to

                    be somebodies, no one certain
                    of our origin, wandering
                    reliquaries carrying some
                    thing so precious and precocious

our own tribes refused to believe
we could keep so big a secret
scattering its treasures among
tyrants, giving away without
advertising its wisdom that
in some beings some things harbour
a heart’s wealth of substance, while in

                    others no honour exists, salt
                    waters the earth as dusk’s bending
                    brow of light closes its lid on
                    seas, drowning them in tears, and that

we, two kids, could keep so well-hid
from infectious factions of gods
yes, even our parents, both sides’
authorities, politburos,
Nazis, and a litany of
other enemies, no less our

                    own bodies, the root cause of their
                    animosity, how all things
                    as Agrippa said, are made from
                    enmity and friendship, how in

our twenties, we went beyond tides
to divide our Selves into two
scythes our split personalities
reconciled when we united
when the crescents of our cries wept
into a pool of sheets we wrapped
our limbs in, tangled like a grove

                    of trees when we sweated under
                    one moon, when, for one full month in
                    altered states we climbed ladders and
                    slipped through the barbed wire embrace of

another world’s consciousness, all
our days numbered before the ice-
box failed to cool our heat, before
death nipped at our toes and the wings
fell from our feet, when we broke the
caduceus on our way through life
to celebrate the mysteries.

1Henry Cornelius Agrippa of Nettesheim, in “Three Books of Occult Philosophy, OR [sic] of Magic; written by that Famous Man [sic] Henry Cornelius Agrippa, Knight And [sic] Doctor of both Laws, Counsellor to Caesar’s Sacred Majesty, and Judge of the Prerogative Court: BOOK I[sic,] Chapter XX: That natural virtues are in some things throughout their whole substance, and in other things in certain parts, and members[,]” of Three Books of Occult Philosophy: written by Henry Cornelius Agrippa of Nettesheim: Completely Annotated with Modern Commentary: The Foundation Book of Western Occultism: Translated by James Freake: Edited and Annotated by Donald Tyson, Woodbury, MN: Llewellyn Publications, 2016; page 65.
2Tennessee Williams, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Act I, Lines 940–943, Margaret to Brick, in Drama: Classical to Contemporary, edited by John C. Coldewey and W. R. Streitberger, Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1998; page 903.