Triptych

I

The world began with the first death

nature is uncaring about such things

Fills the world with greens, russets and gold.

 

The first kill when it came was the work of a careless selfish shove one human bratling pushing another amongst the nettles trapped within his boring world. There are worlds beyond the green and grey. The searing agony sent nerve endings into overdrive the mind, body and soul locked down as infant is washed away on a tsunami of bile.

 

Washed ashore on a beach of sunbaked glass shards pierced young flesh. Lacerations left a trail as the stranger lurched inland, lost and alone beneath the baleful gaze of an uncaring sun. (Far away a father punches an overzealous soldier who tries to search the dying child for explosives.) Hours turned into days in a land with no direction, no shelter a stranger in a strange land the silent observers perched on sand sculpted pillars observe his final move as he approaches.

 

Sun blistered heads turn as he staggered into their midst vultures with human faces they observe and taunt. Shelter lurks just beyond them a cave from which foetid air belches several degrees cooler than outside. A jackal headed youth approaches blocks the way feebly at first he resists then driven by rage he wrings its neck, tears loose the jaws of entropy and chases the vultures away. They take to the air where they explode in a shower of gore spraying the land with corrosive slime.

 

The cave provides shelter

Cupped like parched hands grasped

For water they hold him till the darkness comes.

 

 

II

History is written by dyslexic spiders

Across a burning page,

A futile gesture carried away on motes of light.

 

When they died the world went mad established communities tore themselves apart. Friends, neighbours and siblings became rivals. The court jester’s seized the thrones of burned out paradise. The bedraggled stragglers sought shelter behind invisible walls territory emblazoned with colours tall to frighten, poison and control.

The stranger found himself in one such isolated community while imaginary wolves circled the walls seeking entrance babes in arms cried succour to the waxing moon. One of us or one of them no inbetween, no fence sitting here. Over time imaginary walls became solid fortifications while vulture headed demagogues’ bellowed to the desperate herd “follow me!, No Surrender!, Our Day will come!” it mattered not they poisoned the wells.

When strength returned to arms he struggled forth beyond the walls while ignorance hid in plain sight. He bore his strength, his burden on his back as he stepped forth along the path of shattered dreams. Perhaps in red boughs he’d find some peace a token to change the past, bring down the walls.

 

Slowly an ember drifted down,

Smote the ground and lit the way,

Perhaps tomorrow is the sound of a turning page.

 

III

The bravest one,

Seeks knowledge

Where there is ignorance.

 

Armed only with a staff and the jaws of entropy he left the lands of men behind. The streets clogged with arterial red brick clogged and broke the will. Here in the dreamland he was free, beneath the uncaring sun. The stranger’s feet calloused and scarred kicked up the dust of aeons as he crossed plains of bone. Walked the spines of nations bent he approached the fields of razor stone flaked, baked tumble down walls.

 

Beyond the hills stone pillars stabbed the sky each a shelter of hermits too afraid to fly, to crawl, to walk. Beneath their contemptuous gaze he strode forth across the bloodied fields where corpses grew each arm stretched pleaded for mercy. His skin crawled with ancient notes an IOU from some absent minded demi urge. His mouth dried lips parched to painful to smile the gallows gaunt strode on.

 

In the depths of a dust bowl he found the riddles end, the hanged tree clung wickedly to boulders each branch a red bough. Decorated with the corpses of laughing God’s they pointed to the unbeliever. Who made me? He cried…no one answered. Climbed the branches of the hanging tree he flung himself upon jagged fears. The truth pierced the flesh as it revealed we made ourselves.

 

Life flowed through bitterness

Artifice helped cradle a dying child

Soothed to sleep by automatic bleeps.

 

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