Monday, July 27, 2009

Brief Lives Sutra (Tantrayana)


Nothing casual about it.
You arrived so unexpectedly, it had
to have been planned.

So I had you for a day,
part of a day and a night,
though it seemed much more.

In sleep a beast whose breathing
was rough and tender,
probably from smoking;
I was content, enveloped in
the warming touch of your skin.

Shall I be jealous of a dog? But she’s
your best friend, the only one you really trust,
who never leaves your side.
Deep brown spaniel eyes, dark and ageless,
watch me with dismissal: I’m not you.
Your marriage of eyes and walking
has preserved you best: so be it.
She has you forever. If I only have you
for a day, that’s enough.


Comfortably naked after showering, after
a morning of sweaty woods work,
plagued by flies and biting sun.
I didn’t want to get dressed.
Room enough in the shower for two.
He wanted to watch everyone bathe,
but had to coaxed out of his clothes.

Walking nude down to the lake,
half-hard, I hid myself with my sarong
in front, nothing behind.
Boots and shaman necklaces enough to wear.

The blue sky, the endless water,
spring-clear and icy. Loons called all morning, lost.
Not only the body naked.

Lying on my back on the raft, sunlight, and cool breeze.
He said, “May I?” and I said,
“Feel free.” And before I knew what,
his lips encircled my cock, worshipful.
Instant electric pulse through the entire body,
back arched on the wood of the raft,
warm and soft-sliding little noises.
Imagine my surprise.

I touched his hips and cock and chest
and the obstetric line hatcheting his groin
below full balls.
His cock bigger than mine,
but he kept telling me how much
he loved mine.
Kissing nipples till I came.

Came everywhere, endlessly,
in the heat and sun,
on the floating raft by the marsh grass
and rocks. “Wow, that was a big load,
you must have been saving it for a long time.”
Imagine his surprise.

To be pursued, surprised, caught
and released. I am God’s fish,
the favorite catch of the day.

Talking in the tingle of afterwards,
kissing. The smoothest skin in any state,
the roundest shoulder, the firmest breast.

Fulfillment of a prescient wish:
to make love naked by the water
in the sun in the woods naked
and alone and alive the whole world vibrating.
Now the sky bells, blue ringing.
Worth a little sunburn.

In the cool cabin light he says:
“I can’t wait till tonight,”
and kisses me.
Who is the fish? Who is the fisherman?
The Beloved caught up in the catching,
hooked by hooking.
I have waited so very long.

Nothing casual about it.
You arrived so unexpectedly, it had
to have been planned.


the effeminist, androgynous torso
soft still very male
in the as yet unheard echo
bonfire crackling under stars as they turn
deer cries, owls, songs of tamarack
needles crying out as they cast free and plummet

narrow-hipped Nataraj
dancing in and out of nearness
leaping the bonfire nude
an instant before dry balsam explodes
missed searing his scrotum
by microseconds

but I catch him on film
not a repose between dances
rather a stillpoint amidst turnings
a fast enough shutter
to freeze an illusion of stillness
caught outside time’s black flow


the loons call throughout the night
surrounding your senses with flight and benediction

in the coldest hours I want to snuggle
close to your back, breathe your sweat,
burrow deep inside your heart,
remind myself of existence

sleep comes fitfully: how many years
sleeping alone, naked, comfortless?

even in the darkness I see your whitened skin
the dark hair that so contrasts
even in the dark, you lighten the tent

beeswax candles flicked the aureoles of your breast
as head back, kneeling above me, you came
I worship at the shrine of your semen
climbing a thin white rope towards god


in the dark mustiness of the cabin noon,
pants down around my ankles,
you sucking my cock,
the slam of the screen door
as someone comes in.
odd that it doesn’t bother me
to be caught like this.
but it’s just my brother,
he smiles and waves,
grabs the ash bucket and goes.
back to business.

sleeping in the cold night tent,
bodies pressed together for warmth.
it had been hot in here earlier,
lit by one candles and two bodies.
he sleeps deep and long,
not noticing or not minding
when I touch his torso
in the middle night,
wondering if all this is real.
(which is the dream? butterfly or sex?)
he snores in stages, four growly honks
a ruminating grizzly
then quiet for awhile.

and before it fades to black,
a few brief scrawled letters
then back to the long listening:

one shoulder naked
in northern lights
sun aurora sentinel moon
shoulder breast and body
glowing by firelight moonlight candlelight
skywheel spinning behind your head
halo of stars

before it fades


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