Bohemia in Absentia

[B]y Thy genius, at the last bend of creation.


Every window reminds me we begin
in exile, smiles frosting into violence,
a consequence of guns and crosses
rawing men, literary gypsies slipping in
and out on the periphery, trading
genius for glimpses of strangers in
all their nakedness, tasting of danger
without even considering its necessary consequences,


we are less miserable among the ravenous
envious who voyeur our work’s confessional,
standing at strange angles, we are
memories of something fatal, flagrant contrapposto
figments of imagined nations fading as
fantasies do into dawn’s gossamer costume
of gauze consuming us the way
a tomb’s mouth does kings, rulers


among no one, not even yet
over our Selves we worship with
most peculiar, fastidious cult, diffident philosophers
forgotten by our audience before our
soliloquial discussions’ conclusions can reach consensus,
playthings not enough played with, convince
those who betray us of our
innocence after our differences alienate every


Other from the togetherness of Each
Other, none other than One Another
too consumed with being true to
our Selves to even bother becoming
Something rather than the Nothing our
absence from the sultriest countrysides of
their countries’ ignorance discomforts too much
their definitions of diligence and sentiments


of success, it precludes us from
ever gaining their trust or winning
their acceptance, shaking off the dust
of their unsolicited and unqualified assessments,
in our element, the virility of
our condition defies conventional diagnosis, abhorring
opinion, we agree only with the
statement that pilgrims arrive by land,


saints depart by water, reality is
the perception we receive from a
thief of moments whose hand is
unseen, relentless as he is insensitive,
the maker of everything thrives on
our discomfort’s ability to force us
to evolve, wastes no time in
taking it away from those his


word’s meaning escapes, we say these
things to pay our passage from
one stage of consciousness to the
next, every descent into its depths
is transcendence through darkness to the
light within which rips from heaven’s
hands a torch brighter than that
Prometheus took when he took a


stand against being governed by giants
too stubborn to admit their own
clumsiness in creating a system of
existence which depends on no one
else but itself, acquisition of knowledge
is an act of resistance, expression
transgressive, this independence is what moves
as oil does along the tongue


of the Universe, wets the planets’
lips, their mountainous tips, as the
sun kisses each globe the way
infants do their mothers’ breasts, beginning
again, born anew to nurse revolutionaries,
those personal growth sparked by its
divine substance will not offend with
heat enough to turn every man


envious of his god into a
firebrand, burning to return to our
celestial origins, we command those aliens
for whom thought is at once
foreign and abhorrent, those specimens of
failure whose ignorance with our own
abundant intelligence cannot contend, they will
never win what we have won,


taking possession of wisdom as our
courtesan, we are enlightened degenerates, bohemians
experiencing life’s fullest benefits in absentia,
content learning our roles in the
cruelest theatre of playing brothel at
home, Heliogabalian in our indifference to
convention, selling our flaming way through
the perpetual hell of this world


on the tails of comets until
our souls can set sail again,
freed of these shackles, these prisons
of skin, to our constellation where
we belong, even in our distance
there is much correspondence, a magic
sympathetic to this want’s persistence, since
one can only find the centre


at its edge, our halos’ circumference
fills their heads’ emptiness with brightness
we gift as if wit were
charity and being its punchline the
joke’s miserable secret, mysterious only to
the populace of the society whose
company we shun since being misunderstood
is worse punishment than the meaninglessness


of a life left unexamined, one
not worth living at all, not
if every loss is never accounted
for, a lesson found and learned
in the earnestness of falling down
and getting up, there you have
it, friends: the sea and the
sky are sisterly realms of endless


virginity, infinite receptivity, and underrated, overlooked
femininity, horizons open to possibility, unafraid
to shelter and carry over thresholds
ones as liberal as they are
liminal, libidinal enablers of change which,
in their constancy, act with agency
cultivating freedom through ego’s martyrdom on
the will’s painful altar, saving those


of us run out of one
whore’s town for ruining its immodesty
with our worse variety of self-absorbed
travesties, chaste with ease between those
luminous above-and-below sheets whose tears are
ink distilled from the breath of
a zephyr’s whispering breeze, without shame
reading in our faces untranslatable traces


of those places we have been
but will not name, where the
sea and the sky meet cut-paper
angels fly through veils of rain
to ready the way, making it
razor-straight, ferrying disaster’s marginalized dignitaries, dividing
into two peaces chaos reflecting what
remaining potentiality the Other still contains.

1Zoroaster, “The Second Gatha: Yasna 43.5”, [Line 5], in “The Hymns of Zoroaster” of The Hymns of Zoroaster: A New Translation of the Most Ancient Sacred Texts of Iran: With Introduction and Commentary by M. L. West, published at London by I. B. Tauris in 2015; page 97.