—For my friend

How to hear silence?
To let speak stillness from out of those infinite shadows
that surround you? On all sides, in all ways, after every curtain
covering every window has been pulled back—what?
All that work to find nothing? Fuck.
Had you but known you’d probably have done elsewise.

(That’s the finest –wise, that else.)

All the timeless ones knew, for what it’s worth,
that our magic was magic was magic was magic—magic. All,
so and too few, knew power lied not in right words
but in words,
words heard for the nuptials they are: ciphers and reasons
wed for procreative seasons
for a world in which our witches burn and our men fly.
Then men too must die. What else is the finest else
to do before she—She—lifts her hem to welcome him

(Don’t worry: the men aren’t men nor the witches women.)

And “whether men wake or whether men dream,
god never deceives them with visions or
with words or by signs.” Only nothing never deceives
with words and dreams of what won’t happen
when you’re all done. All quiet does is wait. And
I’ve read it’s your own voiceless summoning of yourself
into yourself from out of yourself. Guilty.

(So be ready.)

You keep looking for the image-parable of the world
when all you have to do is listen for her voice. The timbre of which
feels just like the distance between you
and the farthest particle held out into space.
This is how the words come: nothing exhales her shadow song
and it tumbles toward your ear night after night, moment after
moment after moment; ready or not, still: Amat victoria curam.

Then, they come as the most homeless of words, these strings
of words, these hymns of words, images, parables, measurements
of nothing—as something toward everything; or maybe just someone.
You to yourself: “Now thou art an O without a figure.
I am better than thou art now; I’m a fool, thou art nothing.”
All the timeless ones—the good ones—knew
that our nothing was magic was magic—magic.

How to hear silence:
Let speak the stillness from out of those infinite shadows
that surround you.


(Image above, “(Un)Painted by Scott Bandy,” found painting, 2016)

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