A Thing of Flesh and Feathers


Taming the beast eclipsing every
page with ink, I fall—call on Zadkiel,
weakened—fearing the very love I have
been seeking. Keeping concealed from others

a thing of flesh and feathers weeping song
no one else but my Self and hell envy,
if any angel ever ignored so
coldly these words pouring out of me, worse

hurts than being adored by so many—
too few of whom understand, or want to,
this burdensome talent for poetry—
would be exerted by heaven above

on men less notable and more lowly—
if not so misquoted as I am—if


only! For being outspoken in—free
in my treatment of—matters other than
what matters, gift me please courage to ask
to be shown what I cannot see—but force

me not to read between torments meanings
far sweeter than their bitterness makes me
want to believe. Beneath the skin some skull
keeps its crystal vault secret—who bothers

its ignorance’s comfort just deceives
those diseased thoughts which haunt its theatre
with all the hubris of actors, who seem
doctors, but rattle this globe with but half

the skills any successful liar needs—
faith in themselves yet not in how to laugh.