Saturday, March 21, 2020

Beyond the Horizon My Body Defines

Yet ask: can anything in fact ever be ruined? Hours after morning prayers that were haunted by an angry and displaced angel, one cleans the kitchen and reheats tea, humming Dylan tunes from the 1970s. What we name "rain" and what we name "loss" and what - deeper yet - cannot be named for it is itself the origin of naming. Fill one tea cup with moonlight and it becomes a spiritual practice, one you can't stop indulging as if God or the ghost of your dead grandmother was made unceasingly happy thereby. Begrudge no woman her honor and due. We kiss in the foyer, dry old lips grazing drier older lips, the movement rich with apology and promise, the whole history of love, each the other's help-meet unto eternity. At noon I go off to teach, adopting a stance towards the world premised on half-remembered readings of the Rule of Saint Benedict. You think you're getting somewhere, or getting away from something, but mostly you're going in circles, mostly you're pretending you can do more than just float. The chickadees say "welcome" as if I've entered a church but I don't remember seeing any doors. "Oh yes," she breathes in the vault of my attention, enshrined with Jesus and Henry David Thoreau. "Now bow," she says in the bells of my adoration. "Now slowly turn and behold the world," she cries from beyond the horizon my body defines as unapproachable. I mean this Heaven of possibilities here: this together we never aren't in.

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