The Wilderness Beyond Eden


Offer me without dignity
to a vengeful deity who guides us
by vanities, in the name of
him whose every saying is a lie
string me up beside a thief and
an impostor, and for those who cannot

decide if he should speak or if
he should remain silenced, pronounce deicide
as his sentence, his crime sentience
which made spirit seem manifest, splay my
flesh spread like a portent on high
or a sunset stripped of its innocence

whose backdrop’s draw no camera
can deny, pressed like a porn-star kiss, tongue
outside the mouth and thrust against
the crackling filament shadowing to
blindness behind the bleached glass of
a chroma-key sky’s platinum itch, and


withered window-cleaner blue, make
of my heat-stroked meat an offering for
broke sin-eaters to receive like
a mixed signal without gratitude or
acknowledgment, test history’s
pattern by colouring the faces of

its wars’ heroes black, not with lines
of chalk but ashes that scar, and barbs that
rip through the flags worn as robes by
those whose parade no rain bows to but storms
blow down, with laughter louder than
a bomb make martyrs of clowns, bury me

in the sound, fill my head with sand
as if this desert of an existence
were Auschwitz and every proud
angel an ostrich the unfriendliness
of my foul weather does away
with, falling face-first into his own faith’s


bullshit as I give up my ghost’s
interest in its residuals and
haunt instead my right wing’s broadcast
without protest as if it’s a royal
prerogative or privilege
just to be wanted, since the wilderness

beyond Eden is what we need
when being needed bleeds from us what we
once believed in, our exile the
lesser of two evils when sacrifice
keeps people from seeing what they’re
seeking breathes deep within them, not so much

its appearances but this life’s
loose adaptation’s insurmountable
clearances, and neglected due
diligence, that deceives weak men into
sinking like anchors in the dead
sea they should be spending their lives fishing.