Saturday, 10 October 2015

Left on an Altar by Stefanie Low

Bruise and bloom, darling human.
Don’t cover up the celadon and onyx sickness punches on your right elbow.
Behind the left knee, capillaries burst like volatile emotions.
Red zinnias.
Without owning all these intricate maps of blood how will you get better?
Be the cartographer of your own body. Love the blemishes.
(They need it most). Use the compass to connect
all your birthmarks aren’t bullet holes from other incarnations;
they are constellations to lead you back to us.
But not just yet.
On this green man called Earth
you’ll need wood
seasoned with a dryad’s tears, 
glass removed carefully from an (ex) ice queen’s heart, 
two handfuls of earth from your birth place, and a bleached stone
that skips itself across the seaweed line every evening at high tide.
Each day you find a fragment: a single grain of what you need.
It is enough to write your story on.
Isn’t that reason to light the Nag Champa and twirl
deosil around your altar?
We are not moved by your doubt or what you consider respectful distance.
How many more signs do you need before you believe?
Go ahead and scream that black hole scream.
You won’t singe our wings or hurt our ancient feelings,
little fire bird with a forked tongue.
We’ve laid the tools at your feet.  They’re centuries old, you know.
Look, child. Even the athame you wanted.
Just plunge it into the jar you want.
We could do it for you of course, but we won’t.
Stop obsessing over controlled demolitions
and leaving snake skins at crossroads;
what is happening here? The way you break it
is from the inside. You know this.
Can’t you leave the anguish for just a second?
It will be waiting on your doorstep
when you return from that newly discovered planet
even NASA’s exclaiming over.
Water, a clear sky, definite signs of life.
Everything you think you want
more than a tarnished gold apple on a cracked plate.
But that’s Monday. On Tuesday’s it’s a silver fig on an oak leaf.
Witchling, do not cry and bottle your tears for him,
for her, for them. Break open and release your
sadness to the underside of clouds, all opalescent--
rain is memory enough. Please
trust us. These daily floods
destroy the foundation of your house.
As for the cards. You will learn to read them
in one full turn of the Wheel or less.
Whatever you decide, (and decide you must)
you must be the blue lotus floating in your own heart. 

The rest of this letter is for the others- (if there will be others).
Now then. If all the stars align like some kind of cosmic
synchronized night swimming, wait for five points of light
so she can invite you in. Please leave your shoes by the door
and don’t forget an offering; she likes honey and song.
Just like us.

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