12 August 2016

Poem-A-Day #165 : Wood (Part 12 : Roots)

Trees want you dead. Trees are plotting. Read Part One HERE.


Wood (Part 12 : Roots)

I had a dream that I was pulling out the roots of a tree with my bare hands : they were worms snakes tentacles of difficult that curled around my arms and tightened until my skin turned purple and the veins burst : my blood poured from my arms like stigmata and I collapsed in the now red mud and rolled like a baby in tantrum : earth thought about swallowing me but felt nauseous with the heat of summer : it was pregnant was fighting a cold was full of other bodies : I was too much for it and the roots let my limbs go and I sailed into the night laying in this un-tomb :

Then I got up this morning and dug bricks with the names of the dead etched into them out of the hungry soil : the names stared at me oddly as if I could understand them if I just looked more but their histories vanish as the dirt is wiped off :

This is an AIDS garden it is forgotten and it is drying in the sun : I think about my arms open to the light and air and I think about being able to do this without dying : I imagine myself as a succulent in a window box stretching my one finger-like stalk towards the sun until the tip pinks and opens into anemone and feelers : I think about AIDS and how it transmits like ideas : a meme of unimaginable power : you learn its name and then it is inside of you and then your skin will harden and your eyes will pucker : we all have AIDS some inside of our bodies and some inside of our thoughts :

Pressing marigolds into the earth with my grandfather : the coolness of the dark soil between my fingers and under my nails : the faces of the plants have yet to open they are thinking about opening they are paused they are unborn :

Please hold this for a moment : it is the end of the root that tried to kill me : it has been pulled three meters out of the ground the skin is paper and falling off and underneath it is white and looks like raw potato : it is bone : we will keep pulling together until we find which tree it belongs to : which hand it is the pointer finger of : maybe we should taste it and see if it also is starchy and dense : I remember chewing on raw wood and feeling the sensation of it being green and dense and like what I imagine a finger would be in your mouth :

I want to eat the world : and this hole opening up that was in my dream and is now in this garden and now also involves you is becoming a mouth that could do that work for me : I drop bricks into the maw until it resembles the insides of a shark the face of a lamprey :

Hold this root against your skin until it inches itself under it and into it and to your blood stream and then to your heart like it is a clot finding the center : what do you suppose happens once it is there :