Rain speaks for your burning,
the temples are lost to flood,
and sun gazes down to graze
the barren cheek of earth, cracked
to hollow creeks of drought—blooms
to new scar, to newly released.
The souls exemplify, are deified by example
of loss, transcends mortal healing,
purer now than heat.
And in the midst of all this destruction
the gods of suffering arise, their faces
dark, their eyes like shadows upon the wall.
They lurch from the marshes, they stumble
down their weathered mountain paths.
Into the golden fields of heaven they go.
To meet the sun like a procession
of mourners and elephants
waiting for rebirth.
The dead crawl from their graves.
No resurrection for them, the ending
of this world ensures that. They speak.
They mutter in their now-forgotten tongues.
So many litter the burning world, hanging
from treetops, collapsed under rock, drowning
in sands, the endless sands
that threaten now as never before,
spreading across this world
like an ill-meant grin.
From this waste, a miracle.
From this controlled destruction,
a surgeon’s precise welding
of human elements: all they know
is the rattle of leaves, the waves
correspond to the fields' commingling,
communicating, learning the secret songs
of destruction, its cousin, decay.
Soon, even the darkness will feel small.
Even the chaos grows old.
They arise now
faces marred by ink, deepened
by immeasurable suffering, how they
force lilies through chests and foreheads, how tears
must emerge like icicles, horns,
half god, half spirit, flowered pathos
emerging to resolve and resurrect.
The gods of mercy are not
what we imagined, as we hitch rides
within their hearts, massive with
Ferris wheel lights, and yet
all we have lies in grand
amusement, horrified, intertwined
with the ribs of wild grasses,
the faded lips of petal
they float like bruises
on the tender threads of air,
a river, now, of love.
darkened, cursed beings
scrounging for desires and lusts along the seabed floor,
the gods of mercy and forgiveness
arise now, carrying the dead like children,
robed and canonized in suffering,
as beautiful and terrible
as the falling stars.