Huginn and Muninn: a digital gothic (part 8- the sinking lure)

Huginn and Muninn: a digital gothic (part 8- the sinking lure)

 

Part 8: the sinking lure: [Playlist: Ellie Goulding: Lights Instrumental]

 

the anglerfish sinks

her lure winks off                      on

 a lightning bug
wil o wisp
yellow sea star

shrinks
to a pinhole flash
and nothings-out

quiet floods
into the would-be time

for mercy to wink
and leap for sidelong dreams                 a near-escape

                               but form is skin-tight want
insisting thought
clench down to bread and blood:

so slow and painful to be things

given arms or legs or wings
worse still
re   membered

 as a burnt-out light might
toss a phantom flare
toward the thought of night

 absence is thing-shaped
and the more disfigured
the more distinctly felt

what was  what was  what was  what
was      still describing to the missing limb

 a clenching fist

O Reader! I had you in my mind
to share the life of our common body
not bounded by finite skin      

believed we two as sorcerers
might cast ourselves into other worlds
as winged spells          and thereby make        in borrowed form                             

a home of dark winds
no frightening place to those whose
feathers           each a glistering facet

might catch the many beams like a lighthouse crystal
returning through the veil
one focused light

but the guides are lost
and any acrobatic
sleight of mind            is stripped
when

                                    the phone rings and
a voice breaks

a falling father body crashes through

the knowing mind          a grown child asking y y y y
all times and all selves come slamming home

when the split sides of the air collapse
in thunder

holy stranger                    ghostly Z who rises
from the juncture

featherless        mindless
bodiless            X

in this no place

no light to see light crushed

            by fire into dust and bits of bone
packed into a named and numbered box

            paid for at the appropriate office

            and carried to the passenger seat of the car
buckled in for the

 tremble of final air
squeezed out in a thread of breath

so fine a mist
ruptures

into a

            fiery particle

a light visible only to you
the stranger       the reader
who gently insists

the pages of years
still left to smoulder
a music in our flame of living

emptiness and cold ignite
between doorway and threshold

into a black, bird-shaped light
burning above a dark new country

read part 9

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Huginn and Muninn: a digital gothic (part 5- a candle)

Huginn and Muninn: a digital gothic (part 5- a candle)

Part 5: a candle. [Playlist: Virtual Boy: Mass]

 

you’ve seen where dreams end up:

in the foyer on a polished credenza               in a jar marked kosher
for everyone to admire at parties             the contents naked, shriveled,
obscenely meaty

late at night after the card games
you hear the adults sneak into the hall

the scrape of the lid unscrewing

the muffled sounds of hunched gorging

you barricade yourself behind your bedroom door
light several devotional candles from the dollar store
and conjure the real thing:

he steps out of the wall poster
and makes himself at home        taking the form of a rock angel or
that boy you met at the busstop or the school friend who can’t put two words together

tonight he’s nick cave
you discuss a way to address the problem:

he says             the cleaners are coming, one by one
you don’t even want to let them start

and you say      I believe in some kind of path
that we can walk down, me and you

so with tiny slits on the meat of the thumb
fleshed out with lyrics and candle flames
sugar water collected under the tongue

deals written in nail polish  folded in tight triangles
on college ruled paper
the same song on repeat                        11,       12,       2am

you call the live dreams down from the scrim

ghost riding it in                                                             you’re not sure it’s going to work
then

the walls shift,   the stairwell creaks
the roof shakes shingles free of its eaves

you grab for nick’s hand                        but you palm right through his wave
he shrugs back into the paneling                        just as the jambs vault the lintels

above your head in the crawlspace
you hear the mice panic

from the window you watch                 beams snap free of rafters       the house stretches                                first one long wing

and then the other

nails squeal                   mortar crumbles
pipes pop loose like tuning forks
the attic belches bats and owls

the floors groans          the house crouches
and launches

you’re airborne

your window screen blows out
followed by the window

you rise, rise                        clinging to the sill through the first awkward flaps
there’ll be bruises on your elbows from the g force

streetlights shrink
cold air flattens and whips your hair

your block                    your street        your town
shrink to toys    to blurs                             the house glides            soars

dipping to one side              and then the other
floorboards casting a hatched shadow through the moonpath

there are other houses                   here and there other conjurers
transfixed at their bedroom windows
faces transformed

your house flocks with the other houses
together they swing west

far below, the oil refinery         a black dragon with long nostrils capped by venting flames
is chewing its rear leg free of a retaining wall:

several freeway overpasses and a section of tunnel
kite past               the wind howling over their lips and mouths

out over the water now
you see the lighthouses dive and submerge
playing in the surf around the feet of the bridge

and that’s when you hear the music
feel it first, really, vibrating your lungs:

it is the houses sailing the length of the bridge
dragging their wingtips along the suspension cables

you catch the gaze of a girl in a basement window
dear friend
                  her eyes say                                          welcome

 

read part 6

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