Arthur Seefahrt

Alchemy, ii

 

 

When I thought I was a stone again

 

you moved my hands to frame stars

 

and after careful leafy scrutiny

 

we found only an asteroid 

 

in my eighth and roofless house

 

and though you are a fine instructor

 

I still know nothing of death

 

 

 

 

 

You tell me         on the bridge

 

in the lesser hall of the forest

 

that it is your house

 

and to determine my path        out of the ninth house 

 

there is a ritual            you say

 

tear pages from your favorite novel

 

and drop them to the water

 

stop on page 13 or 77

 

and chart their constellation along the bank

 

I say          my books are too important

 

and take off your clothes

 

 

 

 

 

At the top of the steps

 

outside the tenth house

 

I realize           gazing in the first floor window

 

that this is a repurposed library

 

and that I have been puppeting this ritual

 

every day for over a decade

 

There are rooftiles scattered around

 

the gardens outside the tenth house

 

I slip a red piece into my pocket

 

It is hard like cold wax

 

it is the color behind your lips

 

when you scattered my bones about your nest

 

 

 

 

 

I need to go to the eleventh house

 

Want to come with

 

It bobs off the end of the peer

 

chained to the pilings of 

 

our collective islands

 

There are nine of them

 

each one has a woman’s name

 

anchored like star clusters 

 

in the greenness of nightsea

 

Sofas made of cage raised fish bones

 

lamps guaranteed to fail

 

a flaming sword guards the exit

 

so you can never leave without buying in

 

 

 

 

 

They swear us both in at the twelfth house

 

and even do the blood test

 

it doesn’t matter though          America is so big

 

that I will never not find you

 

The twelfth house climbs

 

from the white salt of the airport

 

My stolen moodring turns orange

 

will you embrace me yet?

 

The twelfth house I built 

 

as tower with words there

 

only to realize                it is a wall

 

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