if we don't start fires, then we'll breathe forth floods.
beneath our poetic simplicity is a raging monster with gnashing teeth and complications snarled all around its bloodied tongue. we're earthquake-palms hovering over the equator, sending continents careening into one another, their haphazard edges crumpling like damp paper. we're gaping ocean mouths gasping as life and death and the mess in between is sucked dry with a terrifyingly efficient gulp.
we're emaciated and starving and clawing at the lock to get to the feast on the other side. we're clumsy and awkward and knocking knees trying to finish a race on four feet and two hearts and no breath because we left it at the county line. we're practiced and naïve and reading the instruction manual in gaelic before tossing it to the wayside to learn with hands on experience instead, because --
class is in session:
professor, teach me the geography of twisting torsos and tangled limbs. professor, teach my the science of exploding chemical reactions. professor, teach me the language of love. whisper the rubric into the river of my throat, tattoo the directions on the backside of my spine. then shed the skin of scholars and embrace the world of explorers. mold my hips and discover the ridgeline of my vertebrae. trace the valley of my navel and the canyons of my ribs. whisper questions against goose-bumped flesh and wait for the voice of the ancients to answer in heat and chaos.
forget exploring, concentrate on surviving. think about catching your air as you struggle against the tide, as the undercurrent pulls at your feet, as the flames lick the soles. think about your arteries tying together and your lungs collapsing and death whipping around you so fast you forget the colors of life. concentrate on me then, hold on to me then; wait until we're riding the jagged knife-edge of desire straight into the belly of destruction. wait until we're the crossed wires and smoldering fuse that burn the building to the ground, the city into ashes, the world into the age of the new lovers.
wait until we rise from the charred remains and dust the carcass of old life from our slumped shoulders.
we'll have been students, teachers, chemists, explorers, saviors. we'll stand in this new land of our creation, carved from our lust, burnt with the poetry of our desire, the new canyons a mimicry of your sloping jaw, the new riverbanks an imitation of the seashores of my mouth. we'll look at what we've destroyed in the name of what we've created, we'll see, and we will know. we'll clasp hands, mouths, hearts, and we'll know. we'll write our name on the fledgling mountains, our secrets on the hollow ocean floor, and we'll know.
then we'll ignite fires, breathe forth floods and rebirth the world of our making.